May 30, 2024

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Suspected of spying for China, far-right MEP's aide arrested – Liberation

Suspected of spying for China, far-right MEP's aide arrested – Liberation

The arrestee in Germany works alongside MEP Maximilian Krah, head of the AfD list for the next European elections.

The issue could rock the European elections. A few weeks before the election, an aide to an MEP from the German far-right AfD party was arrested across the Rhine. The federal prosecutor's office announced Tuesday, April 23, that the man was suspected of spying for China.

The man, named Jian Ji, has worked since 2019 for Maximilian Krau, head of the party's list for the European elections (June 6 to 8). A German suspect arrested Monday in Dresden, in the east of the country, is accused of spying on Chinese opposition members and sharing information about the European Parliament with Chinese intelligence. Accused “On several occasions in January 2024 he sent his client information about the negotiations and decisions of the European Parliament. […]», The prosecution said in a press release. This Tuesday, a spokesperson for the European Parliament announced the suspension of the parliamentary assistant. In view “Given the seriousness of the revelations and the decision of the German judicial authorities to question a person currently working as an accredited assistant in the European Parliament, the Parliament suspended the person in question with immediate effect”, This spokesperson said.

“Attack on European Democracy”

These are significant allegations as the Alternative for Germany (AfD) hopes to double its number of representatives in the European Parliament. The Identity Party, founded on anti-European rhetoric in 2013, has continued to advance in the polls, before losing a few points in the polls in recent weeks, weakened by a poll by the site. CorrectiveReveals a conspiracy meeting between neo-Nazis and party officials.

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Despite its waning popularity, the AfD continues to appeal. And according to polls it is the second most popular party in Germany. According to INSA results published in early April, the party could collect 19% of the vote in the European elections, losing 3 points compared to February and placing itself behind the CDU and CSU. Nationally, the trend is similar. Sunday, A new Insa survey for the tabloid Sunday picture 18% said they intended to vote for the AfD, compared to 22% on January 20.

Faced with this myriad of scandals, the racist party was quick to react on Tuesday. As we do not have any further information on this matter at this time, we have to wait for the continuation of the investigation by the Attorney General. AfD pledged from Berlin, saying these revelations “Extremely worrying”. For her part, German Interior Minister Nancy Fasser described the spying issue“Very serious”. “If it is confirmed that Chinese intelligence agencies spied on the European Parliament from the inside, it would be an attack on European democracy.” He announced in a press release shortly after the arrest of the suspect was announced.

A series of arrests

The allegations were strongly denied by Beijing this Tuesday, which has denied everything “Alleged Chinese Spying”. “The theory of the threat of Chinese intelligence is not a new thing in European public opinion.” Chinese diplomatic spokesman Wang Wenbin underscored the condemnation “disgusting” imposed “Clear the environment of cooperation between China and Europe”.

However, this is not the first time that German nationals have been accused of spying for the Chinese secret services. On Monday, three people were arrested in Düsseldorf and Bad Homburg in the west of the country. All of German nationality, they “Strongly suspected of having worked for the Chinese Secret Service since an unspecified date before June 2022”, Central Government Advocate said.

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The arrests come days after the discovery of a sabotage plan on behalf of Moscow. On Thursday, April 18, German authorities announced the arrest of two suspected Russian agents. “Putin's Criminal Regime” In the war against Ukraine. Two German nationals were arrested this time in Beirut, in the south-east of the country.