Edathy case investigative committee: investigators against their will

The investigative committee begins its work. The SPD considers it superfluous. It remains to be seen whether Edathy himself will even appear.

Finds her new task superfluous: Eva Hogl. Photo: dpa

The chairwoman of the investigative committee on the Edathy affair sounds as if she actually has better things to do: "We are of the opinion that we did not need this committee," says SPD politician Eva Hogl, a few hours before the committee begins its work. She expects "no surprises and no new findings." Her parliamentary group colleague Uli Grotsch, who as SPD chairman is supposed to contribute to the clarification, also appears moderately motivated: "As the SPD, we are of the opinion that there are no more open questions."

This is disputed by the opposition, under whose pressure the committee will start on Wednesday evening. Finally, the first child nudity photo raids on former SPD member of parliament Sebastian Edathy were followed by an affair that kept the grand coalition in suspense for weeks. Federal Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich (CSU) resigned, and the posts of SPD parliamentary group leader Thomas Oppermann and BKA chief Jorg Ziercke wobbled.

To this day, the Greens and the Left faction see central questions unresolved. In four meetings of the Interior Committee, she heard four different versions of what had happened, criticizes the Green Party chairwoman Irene Mihalic. It must be clarified why the BKA needed two years to investigate the explosive suspicion against Edathy.

In addition, it is still unclear whether the SPD man was warned before the investigations. The Green MP hopes that Edathy himself could answer this question as a witness before the committee. However, it remains to be seen whether he will come at all – and to what extent he will invoke his right to refuse to testify as a defendant.

While the opposition wants to cover its information needs in just six to eight meetings, the SPD expects a work program of up to a year – "a committee of inquiry," warns Chairwoman Hogl, is "a tanker, not a speedboat." The eight-member committee wants to decide on the first motions for evidence this week, so that the files are available after the summer break.

At the start, the CDU/CSU placed itself protectively in front of the BKA. It will not allow any "denigration" of the authority by the opposition, announced the CDU-objector Armin Schuster. Leftists and Greens should not be allowed to act out their allergies to security authorities there. A fear that even the chairman of the Association of Criminal Investigators at the BKA, Andy Neumann, spontaneously rejected. After all, not only the CDU and SPD, but also the Greens and the Left Party are sending two former police officers, Irene Mihalic and Frank Tempel, to the committee.

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