Germany's 1st Black lawmaker won’t seek reelection after death threats

Germany's 1st Black lawmaker won’t seek reelection after death threats

Karamba Diaby announces decision amid rise in racist attacks, xenophobic hate crimes in the country

By Anadolu staff

BERLIN (AA) - Germany's first Black lawmaker Karamba Diaby on Tuesday announced his decision not to run again for a parliamentary seat in elections next year.

The Senegal-born lawmaker received numerous threats in recent years from neo-Nazis and right-wing extremists, and his office was also targeted several times, including by gunfire and an arson attack.

“Racism and hatred are not the main reasons why I am no longer running for the Bundestag. My decision is partly for personal reasons. On the other hand, I want to make room for younger people,” the Social Democrat politician told Berliner Morgenpost newspaper.

The 62-year-old expressed regret that racist attacks and xenophobic hate crimes have increased in recent years, and slammed the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) for stoking fears of immigrants and refugees.

“In the Bundestag, especially since 2017, we have seen speeches by the AfD that are full of hatred and denigration towards migrants and other minorities. This is fertile ground for hatred on the streets,” Diaby said.

“I recently received death threats, and last year there was an arson attack on my office in Halle. The worst thing is that my team is also being threatened,” he added.

“That is a red line that is being crossed. We must and can have tough discussions with each other. But violence must never be a means,” he added.

In 2013, Diaby became the first African-born Black person to be elected to the German parliament, the Bundestag, and has been serving as a lawmaker for more than a decade, representing the voters of the city of Halle.

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