German party faces split over Ukraine – media

According to Der Spiegel, sections of the Left party are unhappy with one of its leader’s comments

One of Germany’s major political opposition forces is on the verge of splitting, Der Spiegel has claimed.

In an article on Friday, the media outlet described a conflict within the Left party over one of its senior members, Sahra Wagenknecht.

Der Spiegel claims that she fell out of grace with many of her comrades due to her position on Russia’s military operation in Ukraine. Wagenknecht has repeatedly criticized Berlin’s sanctions on Moscow and called for talks with the Kremlin.

Wagenknecht reportedly complained that a party colleague and Thuringia’s governor, Bodo Ramelow, had called her “Putin’s propagandist.

The extent of the opposition against her became apparent late last month, Der Spiegel says, when she was invited to speak at a Left party rally in Leipzig, only for the invitation to be withdrawn a little later.

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The exact reasons for this are unknown, but according to an SMS reportedly sent by Wagenknecht to her colleagues and quoted by Der Spiegel, the firebrand suspected the party’s head office was behind the decision.

Der Spiegel reported that this week, after much deliberation, Wagenknecht was allowed to speak in the Bundestag on condition that she would not demand the opening of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. She did not do so, but did accuse the government in Berlin of waging an “economic war against our most important energy supplier.

The remark received heavy criticism from her comrades. Ramelow claimed that her speech undermined the party’s image as a “left, progressive political power,” Der Spiegel reported.

The article went on to say that a number of prominent members have left the Left party already, in the belief that it is unlikely to survive in its current form.

However, an internal document leaked in March indicates that Wagenknecht is not the only party member with similar views. The anonymous paper, allegedly written by senior party members, described the conflict in Ukraine as a “civil war” with “Nazi elements” involved.

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