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Hundreds of Berlin votes found in a bin

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Not in there. Photo: DPA
08:29 CEST+02:00
Hundreds of postal votes for last Sunday's Berlin state election have been found in a bin – and are now being opened and counted, while criminal police start an investigation.

The daily Tagesspiegel reported on Thursday that at least 379 postal votes, which had been properly sent to the Zehlendorf city hall, had found their way into the bin of a block of flats while on their way to the counting station.

The incident was confirmed by the district mayor for Steglitz-Zehlendorf in the south-west of the city, Norbert Kopp. The votes could change a number of the local council seats, although it is not expected that they could have an effect on the state election results where the differences between the parties was clear.

The state criminal police are investigating to see whether the postal votes were thrown away by a civil servant, or an external courier.

It also emerged on Wednesday that at least one representative in the state parliament will have to be changed after the results of the Greens and those for the socialist Left party were inadvertently swapped. Evrim Baba-Sommer will replace the Social Democrat Karin Seidel-Kalmutzki as a result, the paper reported.

Electoral returning officer for Lichtenburg district Axel Hunger said it seemed the results were simply written into the wrong column on the evening of the vote.

“They are only human; people who sit there from seven in the morning until ten at night, so mistakes can happen,” said Hunger.

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The Local/hc

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