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As a result of rising prices: is there a threat of social unrest in Germany?

2022-08-11T18:21:04.758Z

As a result of rising prices: is there a threat of social unrest in Germany? Created: 08/11/2022, 20:13 By: Sandra Kathe After the corona pandemic, the expected energy crisis threatens to lead to the next social tensions. Some now fear unrest and escalation. Berlin – Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) speaks of “social explosives”, numerous other politicians of challenging times, expected cuts and a



As a result of rising prices: is there a threat of social unrest in Germany?

Created: 08/11/2022, 20:13

By: Sandra Kathe

After the corona pandemic, the expected energy crisis threatens to lead to the next social tensions.

Some now fear unrest and escalation.

Berlin – Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) speaks of “social explosives”, numerous other politicians of challenging times, expected cuts and an urgent need for action.

The energy crisis will make itself felt in Germany even more clearly by autumn and winter at the latest, and more and more critical tones are being voiced regarding the political handling of the expected difficulties.

The first groups such as the Freie Sachsen party, which is classified as right-wing extremist, have also taken on the issue of the energy crisis and are now announcing demonstrations, for example against Economics Minister Robert Habeck (Greens), instead of events against the admission of refugees and protests against corona measures.

For this reason, many experts are already worried about possible social tensions.

In 2020 and 2021, tens of thousands of people, some of them incited by extremists, took to the streets against the corona measures.

Increased protests are now also expected due to the energy crisis.

(symbol photo) © Jonas Güttler/dpa

Social unrest: Interior Ministry anticipates protests as a result of the energy crisis

For example, the news portal

Deutsche Welle (DW)

reports that the Federal Ministry of the Interior is already assuming that the energy crisis could trigger protests of a similar magnitude to those in 2020 and 2021.

The severity of the protests would therefore depend on "how much the energy costs and a possibly restricted energy supply" would burden society.

According to several experts, the key to preventing such protests from escalating are political measures to support citizens and, ultimately, crisis communication by the federal government.

For example, Evelyn Bytzek, Professor of Political Communication at the University of Koblenz-Landau, points out in an interview with

DW

that people's reactions to political decisions are primarily a matter of perception: "Ultimately, we all tend to act according to what we perceive as after what is real.”

Anger about rising prices: the federal government is struggling to take further measures

This perception is also crucial when it comes to the communication strategies of politicians: "If the crisis management is rated well, then trust is high.

And that's why a crisis is not only a danger, but also an opportunity to create more trust," warns Bytzek.

Ricardo Kaufer, Professor of Political Sociology at the University of Greifswald, also considers crisis communication to be particularly crucial: As a "lesson from the corona pandemic", it is now a matter of creating clear facts within the governing parties rather than openly carrying out political wrangling.

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In his summer press conference, Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz already got people in Germany in the mood for "serious times, which will also demand a lot from us this winter and next year".

Nevertheless, the citizens could "rely on the fact that we will not leave them alone." Scholz announced further measures.

He personally focuses on relief for people with minimum wage or families who have no reserves and are worried about how they will get through the near future with a gross income of 2000 to 3000 euros: "That will also determine my work as Social Democratic Chancellor “.

Scholz is currently not expecting an escalation as a result of the energy crisis

For the time being, Scholz is not worried that Germany could really be facing an escalation as a result of the energy crisis and the associated rising prices: “I don’t think there will be unrest in this country in the form outlined – and that’s because Germany is a welfare state," said the Chancellor.

"This welfare state must be effective in this situation by clearly saying that we will not leave anyone alone." (ska with AFP/epd)

Source: merkur

All news articles on 2022-08-11

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