Germany plans legislation to ban so-called ‘enemy lists’

<p>BERLIN &mdash; The German government on Wednesday unveiled draft legislation that would criminalize the distribution of lists naming people as potential targets for intimidation or violent action.</p>
<p>Numerous so-called enemy lists have circulated in far-right online forums in recent years, some of them containing private information and threats such as “we’ll get you all.”</p>
<p>Justice Minister Christine Lambrecht said the proposed legislation is intended to better protect people from intimidation, including local politicians who have faced hate-filled comments and death threats for their actions.</p>
<p>Walter Luebcke, a politician in the Kassel region and member of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s party, was featured on such lists before he was <a href="">shot dead on his porch by a neo-Nazi</a> in 2019.</p>
<p>Under the proposed legislation, anyone found to be distributing personal data in a way that could endanger the people concerned would face up to two years’ imprisonment or a fine. In the case of lists including data that isn’t publicly available — such as information that could only have come from law enforcement databases — a maximum three-year prison sentence could be imposed.</p>
<p>Journalists and antifascist groups that seek to expose extremist networks would be exempt from the ban.</p>
<p>The bill requires parliamentary approval.</p>