Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

IN THE PAPERS

57 000 little problems

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

The Sarkozy 'threat'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Budget challenge for India's new government

Read more

DEBATE

Africa's Newest Failed State: How to Stop Civil War and Famine in South Sudan? (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Africa's Newest Failed State: How to Stop Civil War and Famine in South Sudan?

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Israeli strikes on Gaza as seen on social media

Read more

INSIDE THE AMERICAS

World Cup humiliation for host nation

Read more

DEBATE

Israel and the Palestinians: How to Break the Cycle of Violence?

Read more

AFRICA NEWS

Somalia : Al Shebab attack on presidential palace

Read more

  • Israel steps up airstrikes as diplomacy gets under way

    Read more

  • Argentina beat Netherlands on penalties to reach World Cup final

    Read more

  • Foiled French jihadist ‘targeted Louvre and Eiffel Tower’

    Read more

  • Obama in Texas to urge congressional action on child migrant crisis

    Read more

  • Iraq’s heritage 'in danger' from ISIS militants

    Read more

  • Froome crashes out of Tour de France

    Read more

  • South Sudan independence heroes ‘have lost their way’

    Read more

  • 100 years on, the Tour de France returns to the Western Front

    Read more

  • Dozens of blindfolded bodies found south of Baghdad

    Read more

  • Alps Murder wife had ex-husband who died on same day

    Read more

  • Both candidates say they won Indonesian presidential election

    Read more

  • Brazil players should never wear 'sacred uniform' again, press says

    Read more

  • Exiled Syrian opposition elects new president

    Read more

  • Ukraine imposes new conditions on peace talks with pro-Russia rebels

    Read more

  • Sarkozy's UMP party 'almost €80 million in debt'

    Read more

Europe

Central bank calls for board member to be fired for racist remarks

©

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2010-10-18

Germany's central Bundesbank on Thursday called for one of its board members to be dismissed after he warned that immigration and high birth rates among Turkish immigrants would undermine the German economy.

AFP - Germany's central bank called on Thursday on the country's president to fire one of its board members after he called immigrants unproductive and said that Jews had a special "gene."
   
"The board of the Bundesbank decided unanimously today to ask the president of the republic to dismiss Dr. Thilo Sarrazin as a member of the board," said the bank, which does not have the right to dismiss Sarrazin itself.
   
In a new book, "Germany Does Itself In", Sarrazin said Muslim immigration and a high birth rate among Turkish immigrants would end up impoverishing Europe's biggest economy.
   
He also told a newspaper that "all Jews share a certain gene," a property he said was shared by the Basques. The comments have seen him widely branded as racist and anti-Semitic.
   
Ali Kizilkaya, head of Germany's Muslim Council, told the Hamburger Abendblatt daily on Thursday that Sarrazin was "Islamophobic" and that his comments were "almost frightening."
   
In October last year, Sarrazin had said that Turks were "conquering Germany in exactly the same way the Kosovars conquered Kosovo: with a higher birth rate."
   
"A large number of Arabs and Turks in this city (Berlin) ... have no productive function other than selling fruit and vegetables," he added.
   
His remarks have drawn fire throughout Germany, including from Chancellor Angela Merkel who called them "completely unacceptable", and European Central Bank chief Jean-Claude Trichet, who said Thursday they were "appalling."
   
The Bundesbank has also strongly distanced itself from Sarrazin -- his duties had already been reduced -- but it is is powerless to sack the 65-year-old because he is a political appointee.
   
President Christian Wulff said in a statement on Thursday that he would review the Bundesbank's request. Newspapers have interpreted recent comments as saying he would dismiss the banker.
   
A number of Germans came out in support of Sarrazin however, saying that Berlin's former finance chief had touched on subjects that were better discussed out in the open than ignored.
   
A poll of viewers by the news television N-24 found that 51 percent opposed Sarrazin being fired.
   
The head of the centre-left Social Democratic Party (SPD), of which Sarrazin is a member, said Wednesday he had received a flood of messages backing Sarrazin.
   
The government itself admits that the country's three-million-strong Turkish minority is badly integrated into German society.
   
According to official figures, nearly one in five young people without German nationality -- which many second and third generation Turks do not have -- leave school with no qualifications.
   
Fewer than one in 10 completes the Abitur -- the secondary school-leaving certificate similar to A-levels in Britain or the Baccalaureat in France -- and their risk of unemployment is twice as high.
   
Other figures show that people in Germany of Turkish origin are significantly more likely to be living below the poverty line.
   
A survey published by the weekly Die Zeit two years ago showed that more than half of residents of Turkish origin feel unwelcome in Germany.
   
Die Zeit said this week that Sarrazin "is in the process of becoming a national hero, exclusion from the Bundesbank board or the SPD could even confer on him the status of martyr."
   
The head of the Greens party, Renate Kuenast, acknowledged Thursday that the immigration issue caused her "concern as well," even as she distanced herself from Sarrazin's comments.
 

Date created : 2010-09-03

  • GERMANY

    Central banker’s controversial book sparks race storm in Germany

    Read more

  • ON THE OBSERVERS

    Opinion: Germany's Judeo-Muslim threat

    Read more

Comments

COMMENT(S)