RussiaDecember 16 2022, 13:15 pm

German Court Rules Connections of Far-Right German Political Group to Russia Can be Reported

Ger­man media is report­ing that an appel­late court has ruled in favor of a Green Par­ty leader who has main­tained that a con­tro­ver­sial orga­ni­za­tion known as Ehe-Fam­i­lie-Leben (Mar­riage-Fam­i­ly-Life) main­tained con­tact with Rus­sia until 2015. Accord­ing to the Tagesspiegel report, Ehe-Fam­i­lie-Leben, in turn, is close to the far-right Alter­na­tive for Deutsch­land (AfD) politi­cian Beat­rix von Storch who, togeth­er with her fam­i­ly, main­tained con­tacts with Russ­ian oli­garch Kon­stan­tin Malofeyev:

Decem­ber 3, 2022 The deputy leader of the Green Par­ty par­lia­men­tary group in the Ger­man Bun­destag, Andreas Audretsch, may con­tin­ue to dis­sem­i­nate that an asso­ci­a­tion close­ly linked to Berlin AfD politi­cian Beat­rix von Storch until 2015 main­tained con­tacts with Rus­sia. That is accord­ing to a rul­ing by the Hanseat­ic High­er Region­al Court, which is based in Ham­burg. The deci­sion is avail­able to the Tagesspiegel. The court thus con­firms a deci­sion of the Ham­burg Region­al Court in favor of Audretsch from Octo­ber 4. Against this deci­sion, in turn, the asso­ci­a­tion “Ehe-Fam­i­lie-Leben” had filed an appeal. The asso­ci­a­tion belongs to von Storchs net­work. The asso­ci­a­tion was rep­re­sent­ed by a lawyer who in the past also worked for Andreas Kalb­itz, a right-wing activist who was expelled from the AfD. “Ehe-Fam­i­lie-Leben e.V.” is the sup­port­ing asso­ci­a­tion of the “Demo für Alle” action alliance. Specif­i­cal­ly, the dis­pute is about the Russ­ian oli­garch Kon­stan­tin Mal­ofeyev. He describes him­self as an “Ortho­dox monar­chist.” He sees Rus­sia as the “legal suc­ces­sor to the Russ­ian empire,” which only Pres­i­dent Vladimir Putin can help to “rebirth.” Audretsch had explained in an inter­view with the news por­tal “ntv” that von Storch main­tained “with her whole fam­i­ly in the back­ground, through fam­i­ly ties and aris­to­crat­ic con­nec­tions” con­tacts to Rus­sia and there, among oth­ers, to Mal­ofeyev, “who orga­nized and financed protests like the so-called ‘Demo for All’.” The asso­ci­a­tion want­ed to achieve that Audretsch must take back this state­ment and may not spread fur­ther. A cor­re­spond­ing motion has now failed in the last instance. In its rea­son­ing, the High­er Region­al Court explains that the con­nec­tion of the “Demo for All” to Mal­ofeyev, as alleged by Audretsch, is giv­en by his role as financier of the plat­form “Cit­i­zen­Go”. Accord­ing­ly, there was rea­son­able sus­pi­cion that the oli­garch had sup­port­ed the plat­form, found­ed in 2013, with a dona­tion of 75,000 euros so that its founder could “set it up and pub­li­cize it for the orga­ni­za­tion of demon­stra­tions.” [Trans­lat­ed from Ger­man with DeepL]

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Last month, the Glob­al Influ­ence Oper­a­tions Report (GIOR) report­ed on Mal­ofeyev and his role in spon­sor­ing new Russ­ian anti-gay leg­is­la­tion, enhanc­ing a 2013 law that bans expos­ing minors to “gay pro­pa­gan­da.” GIOR also report­ed the same week that Mal­ofeyev had report­ed­ly cho­sen one of two MEPs from Marine Le Pen’s Rassem­ble­ment Nation­al par­ty to par­tic­i­pate in a secret project called “Alt­In­tern,” intend­ed to pro­mote val­ues such as “Chris­ten­dom as the foun­da­tion of life” and mar­riage as “the union of a man and a woman.“In March 2022, we report­ed on leaked emails and doc­u­ments show­ing how a Russ­ian influ­ence group known as Tsar­grad coop­er­at­ed with senior far-right politi­cians in Italy, France, Ger­many, and Aus­tria. Tsar­grad is fund­ed by Mal­ofeyev, known by US intel­li­gence as the Russ­ian Pres­i­den­t’s “right arm for oper­a­tions of polit­i­cal inter­fer­ence in Europe,” and des­ig­nat­ed by the US in 2014 over his inter­fer­ence in Ukraine. Mal­ofeyev is also known for fund­ing Euro­pean anti-abor­tion, anti-LGB­TIQ ini­tia­tives. Accord­ing to a recent pro­file:

Mal­ofeyev gained his wealth in telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions dur­ing the late 2000s. He has used his pow­er to wage an infor­ma­tion war on Europe, alleged­ly pro­vid­ing loans to far-right par­ties and fund­ing anti-abor­tion, anti-LGB­TIQ ini­tia­tives in the region.   His influ­ence empire includes the Kate­hon think-tank which reg­u­lar­ly plat­forms far-right authors and is “con­sid­ered one of the instru­ments for Russ­ian inter­fer­ence in the West”. The US State Depart­ment describes Kate­hon as “a pro­lif­er­a­tor of vir­u­lent anti-West­ern dis­in­for­ma­tion and pro­pa­gan­da”.   Tsar­grad TV is the pub­lic enter­tain­ment face of Kate­hon. Dubbed by the Finan­cial Times as “God’s TV, Russ­ian style”, the chan­nel was delib­er­ate­ly designed to mim­ic Fox News and judge polit­i­cal can­di­dates’ views on issues such as reli­gion, abor­tion, LGBTIQ rights and Putin.

GIOR also report­ed in Sep­tem­ber that a US Capi­tol insur­rec­tion­ist had sought fund­ing from Malofeyev.


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