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International Project of the Public Union “For Human Rights”

The Decline of Europe

PreviousNext The Decline of Europe — Objectives, character and methodology of monitoring

Objectives, character and methodology of monitoring

Main page Choice of Germany as the initial monitoring country Background “On the Crisis of Liberal Values and Multiculturalism in Europe” Objectives, character and methodology of monitoring Part I. Crisis of multiculturalism Part II. Corruption Part III. Violation of freedom of expression Part IV. Challenges in penitentiary, law enforcement and judicial systems of Germany, drawbacks in the legislative practice Part V. Unwarranted use of force when dispersing actions of protest Part VI. Observance of human rights in the system of education of Germany Conclusion The Public Union “For Human Rights”

With a view of exploring the real situation in the sphere of democracy, human rights, multiculturalism policy in Germany and preparation of an appropriate report on the topic, the Public Union “For Human Rights” (Baku) set up an international research team. The team visited Berlin, Dusseldorf, Cologne, Hamburg and Frankfurt, on 25 October  - 6 November 2012. 

The international research team included Eynulla Fatullayev, a prominent journalist and human rights activist, head of the NGO “For Human Rights”; Zafar Quliyev, a well-known political expert and analyst; Fuad Hasanov, a human rights activist; Alif Sneider-Kabukchu, a German journalist, member of the German TV-company WRD; and Leonard Nove, the head of the Institute of Media Policy of Germany. Later on, a well-known journalist and education expert Karl-Heinz Heineman got involved in the report preparation as well.   

During the mission trip over Germany, the research team was given every possible assistance by Hugh Williamson, the director of the Europe and Central Asia division of Human Rights Watch, and Vugar Gojayev consultant of this organization, Alexander Bosch, a member of the German branch of Amnesty International, Prof. Susanne Stemmler, researcher of multiculturalism problems in Germany, , and Ulrike Gruska, an expert of the German branch of Reporters Without Borders.

During the two weeks, the team carried out large-scale research work on monitoring of the crisis of multiculturalism in Germany and lowering of the level of ethno-confessional tolerance (against the background of growing neo-Nazi sentiments), analize dnew approaches of the government to the migration policy, examined facts of human rights violations by law enforcement, judicial and penitentiary authorities and studied cases of infringement of the freedom of speech and assembly which occur more and more frequently. In the course of numerous meetings with governmental officials, members of Parliament and political parties’ functionaries, representatives of international organizations and ethno-confessional communities, scientific, creative, media and public circles, as well as with various strata of Germany’s population, the monitoring group, making use of audio, video recordings and target interview method, collected necessary amount of information and enormous factual material on the topic.

In particular, during the monitoring travel, the team members had meetings and talks:

-          At the Berlin Office of Human Rights Watch;

-          At the Berlin Office of Reporters Without Borders, with Christian Mihr, executive director of the organization;

-           At the Federal Foreign Office of Germany, with Markus Löning, Deputy Minister, Human Rights Commissioner;

-          At the Federal Foreign Office of Germany, with Felix Schwarz, head of the apparatus;

-          With Honey Deihimi, Federal Government Commissioner for Migration, Refugees and Integration;

-          -With Jens-Uwe Tomas, head of Migration Policy Department under the Office of the Chancellor of Germany;

-          With Tunçay Kulaoglu,  head and playwright of the famous Berliner Theater Ballhaus;

-          With Kenan Kolat, head of the Turkish community in Germany, a prominent public figure;

-          With Silviya Fehrman, head of the well-known Home of World Cultures;

-          With Tatyana Forner and Zoya Tulburg, activists of the Russian and Ukrainian diaspora in Germany;

-          With Christian Stahl, a prominent German researcher and producer;

-           With Guenter Schneider, Minister of Labor, Integration and Social Issues of Westphalia;

-          With Prof. Dr. Haci-Halil Uslucan, a well-known researcher,;

-          With Klaus Hoppstadte , an MP from Westphalia (Social-Democratic Party);

-          With Serap Güler(Christian-Democratic Faction) and Arif Ünal (Greens Faction), MPs;

-          With Cornelie Wittsack-Junge, head of municipality in Cologne (Greens Party);

-          At the Germany’s oldest and famous TV-radio company WDR;

-          With Roland Leppek, head of Social Policy Department of the apparatus of the Free Democrat Party (FDP);

-           With Katja Gloger, world famous author of the authoritative German “Stern”;

-          With Thomas-occupy, Thomas Dirlich, Pablo Yakobey, Viebke Yaqlns et al, organizers and active members of the movement “Frankfurt-Occupy”;

-          With researchers Barbara Becker, Hans-Peter Kilguss;

-          At a special tent camp in Berlin for persons violating rules of the law of Germany on Freedom of Assembly;

-          At a deportation prison active in Frankfurt till 2005 (former Gestapo prison);

-          At the Cologne Museum of Holocaust and Nazi History (former center of the Jews Filtration).

During our numerous meetings and talks, we tried to realize:  why was multiculturalism a failure in such a seemingly tolerant country as Germany? Why did questions of human rights, freedom of speech and assembly become as topical in this successful country as in countries with decoratory democracy? Why did actions of public discontent and corruption-related scandals become more frequent? Why revanchist and neo-Nazi sentiments find increasing support within the German society?

When examining disquieting developments in the life of modern Germany, the research team attempted to establish the reason of interrelations between the devaluation of European values and decline of democratic initiatives in the countries the West gave up on; sought to identify manifestations of democratic recession in the leading Western European countries, specifically, Germany, and possible influence of these tendencies on democratization processes in the post-Soviet countries, as well as in the ones with problem democracy. 

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