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Quelle ran out of cash three weeks ago

Bankrupt mail order company Quelle is relying on the goodwill and trust of its suppliers as it has not had any money for three weeks, it emerged over the weekend.

Quelle ran out of cash three weeks ago
Photo: DPA

Its last money was transferred to mother company Arcandor just hours before the company declared bankruptcy at the start of the month, a spokesman confirmed, reacting to a report in the Süddeutsche Zeitung.

Suppliers have since been supporting the company with services and goods, trusting that the government will decide to fund it next week.

Even the costs of printing and delivering the Quelle catalogue are being borne by the printer Prinovis.

Horst Seehofer, head of the Bavaria-based Christian Social Union, CSU, has urged Chancellor Angela Merkel to decide in favour of the company, and criticised the government for taking so long to make a decision.

“I appeal to the government to approve the credit by Monday at the latest, as otherwise the jobs at Quelle will be acutely endangered,” he said.

The Bavarian government has already promised €21 million, while the federal government is being asked for €25 million and Saxony state is being asked for €4 million.

Seehofer said Bavarian promise was responsible, and would not be a waste of tax-payers’ money. He also criticised anonymous comments made to newspapers by members of the government saying that Quelle was not seen as worth saving, as irresponsible.

More than 10,000 people are employed by the company in Bavaria.

The workers’ council said it would try to check the reports of cash transfers to Arcandor. “We want to know, to the last euro and cent, what went on over the last few days,” said Ernst Sindel.

A spokesman for Arcandor said there was nothing strange about it, and stressed that the money transfers did not have anything to do with the Quelle bankruptcy.

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NEO-NAZI

German government bans neo-Nazi group for spreading hate

Germany has outlawed a far-right neo-Nazi group called "Sturmbrigade 44" for spreading hatred, Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said on Tuesday.

German government bans neo-Nazi group for spreading hate
Interior Minister Horst Seehofer. Photo: DPA

Seehofer said the group, also known as “Wolfsbrigade 44”, “sows hatred” and “advocates the re-establishment of a Nazi state”.

“Anyone who fights against the fundamental values of our liberal society will feel the determined reaction of the constitutional state,” the minister said in a statement.

Early on Tuesday, almost 200 police officers began searches of premises linked to 11 alleged members of the group in a number of regional states.

Police found weapons, including knives and crossbows, as well as propaganda items such as swastikas and Nazi flags, the interior ministry said.

Members “openly declared their support for Adolf Hitler”, the ministry said, adding that the group was “particularly characterised by militaristic appearance” and “pronounced racism” as part of an “inhuman ideology”.

In July last year, prosecutors raided apartments in several German states of members accused of being part of the group, which was founded in 2016.

Six were suspected of having formed an armed group within the organisation, authorities said at the time.

The news comes amid continued heightened tension surrounding far-right extremism in Germany.

READ ALSO: Germany to create 300 jobs to combat right-wing extremism

Last month, federal prosecutors charged 12 alleged far-right conspirators suspected of planning “terrorist attacks” on politicians, asylum-seekers and Muslims.

In February, a far-right extremist killed 10 people and wounded five others in the central German city of Hanau.

And last year, two people were killed after a neo-Nazi tried to enter a synagogue in Halle on the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur.

The Interior Ministry has said far-right and anti-Semitic hate crime spiked in the country in 2019.

READ ALSO: After Hanau: How can Germany deal with extreme right wing terror

Seehofer already banned three other right-wing extremist groups earlier this year, “Combat 18”, “Nordadler” and the “Reichsbuerger-Vereinigung”.

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