• Germany's news in English

Is Germany dying out?

Exberliner · 22 Jan 2010, 15:53

Published: 22 Jan 2010 15:53 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

If you’ve followed the German media in the last 10 years, or just strolled through a German park during the school holidays, you will have gathered that Germans aren’t making enough babies.

The headlines are melodramatic and sensational, and the statistics are scary, pessimistic - and surprisingly convincing. German women, who for the past 30 years have only been squeezing out 1.4 kids each, are not producing enough offspring to ensure the survival of the German race, culture and pension schemes. According to the latest prognosis (published by the federal statistics office in November), the population will drop to 62 million by 2060, down from 82 million today.

Germany wasn’t always a nation in decline. In fact, until just 20 years ago, the Federal Republic found itself in the middle of what demographers call a “window of opportunity.” This is when a country has a fairly low birth rate – meaning there are relatively few children to pay for and look after – and there is a large adult population still young enough to generate an income. These demographic conditions are considered to be conducive to economic growth, and they come 30 to 40 years after a baby boom. China, for example, is currently considered to be in this phase.

But in Germany, this demographic window is closing.

“The birth rates have not changed in 30 years,” says Stefan Fuchs, a researcher at the Institute for Demography, General Welfare and Family. “The average birth rate is constantly somewhere between 1.3 and 1.5 per woman. That means, in concrete terms, that every generation is replacing itself by only two thirds, so the younger generation is only two thirds the size of the older generation.”

This leads to a birth deficit: when more people are dying than being born. But of course procreation is not the only way a country regenerates its population.

People move in, too. Fuchs explains the balancing influence of immigration. “For the past few years, there haven’t been any visible effects. Immigrants and their children have made up for the birth deficit of native Germans. But since 2003, the birth deficit has actually increased.”

Not shrinking but ageing

The statistics are startling, but the media spin on them is petrifying. Flicking through a Sunday paper, it’s easy to envision future German municipalities as deserted ghost towns, like old GDR industrial complexes. But this is unlikely, since a birth deficit does not mean a dying population. “The problem is not the shrinking population, but the aging one,” says Fuchs. “Our main problem is not one of numbers, but of the changing age structure of Germany today. There will soon be too many old people – and not enough people of working age to provide for them.” At this point, the relatively low birth rates we have now will begin to tell more and more.

Fuchs is not afraid to put a date on this impending welfare catastrophe.

“People born during the baby boom in the 1950s and 1960s will be retiring around 2015, 2020. Then we’ll have far more pensioners to pay for, and increasingly older generations to provide for them. The burden on the working population will rise dramatically.”

This, Fuchs maintains, is not a matter of theory, but of mathematical certainty. Demographers disagree about what the optimal rate of fertilisation is, but believe that an average of two children per woman is necessary to keep a population stable. This means that a good proportion of women actually need to produce three or four.

Whose fault is it?

So far, none of this has been controversial. Media reports may be alarmist and some of their assumptions may be questionable, but the statistics are solid. The arguments start when questions of blame are raised, and solutions are proposed.

Many German newspapers like to blame women with university degrees: they are said to remain childless at a whopping rate of 40 percent. At first glance, this seems quite plausible, since women who study longer automatically delay the time they start having children - especially in Germany, where a masters’, or Magister, can take you into your early thirties. But although the statistics consistently show that women with a university education have fewer children, until recently they have not taken into account the fact that women with degrees are most likely to have babies after the age of 38. A 2007 study by the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research found that the oft-cited statistic that 40 percent of German women with degrees do not have children was wrong. It found that many of the women surveyed actually went on to have kids, and that in fact the figure was closer to 30 percent, only slightly above the average.

A much more contentious issue is how to stimulate the birth rate in order to avert the impending welfare catastrophe. As Minister of Family Affairs in the last legislative period, the popular Christian Democrat Ursula von der Leyen pursued an agenda very clearly aimed to encourage procreation: she fought for an increase in Kindergeld (the monthly child allowance; a €20 increase by 2010), the creation of more crèche places, support for paternity leave. But so far, it has been to no avail. Birth rates resolutely remain where they have been for the past 30 years. There was a slight, temporary bump in early 2009 - much reported in the press – but demographers agreed it did not indicate a sea change. Fuchs believes that any political measures to increase the birth rate can only have a superficial effect. Financial stimulants have even less effect on the demographic group with the least number of children: the middle and upper income brackets.

The singles strike back

There is a growing lobby group that suspects the whole alarmist debate over low birth rates is in fact a big political smokescreen. Bernd Kittlaus runs a website called “The Single Existence” to protect the interests of singles against a government policy that’s squeezing them financially and a media that’s accusing them of degenerating society.

“Just before the financial crisis, the Berlin Institute for Population and Development was praising Iceland to high heaven,” says Kittlaus. “It gave Iceland the best chances for the future. But apparently demography is not as vital to a country’s future as scaremongers would have us believe. No one would claim now that Iceland is in a better position than Germany.”

Kittlaus also points to the 2007 book Less Are More by sociologist Karl Otto Hondrich; in it, Hondrich argues that the birth deficit is actually a “stroke of luck” for Germany, a natural shedding of overabundance to achieve a healthy balance.

Story continues below…

“The labour force of a national economy is not remotely dependent on the children born among the people,” Hondrich claims. “On the contrary, prosperous small countries like Switzerland, Luxemburg and the United Arab Emirates are built to a great extent on imported labour. Independent of this, the economy has always been able to find the labour force it needs – by reducing unemployment, employing more women, lengthening working hours, or getting people to start work younger.”

Hondrich points out that if Germans had been having enough kids in the last 30 years to satisfy the scaremongers, there would now be between 100 and 200 million people squashed into Germany.

Ulterior motives

The politicians’ motivation for encouraging reproduction is clear – creating more kids means creating more future earners, which means securing a tax income for the government. Corner a member of the Christian Democrat Union or the Free Democratic Party and they will tell you that an increase in child benefits is a sound investment.

But the government’s policy is also inspired by deep social conservatism. The FDP’s new proposal is to divert money from kindergartens to give parents Betreuungsgeld – extra care money if they keep their young children at home. This is obviously intended to foster traditional family bonds, but its ultimate affect could be to discourage procreation.

Feminist writer Susanne Klinger of the internet publication Mädchenmannschaft thinks such ideas have led the ruling coalition to a completely mistaken family policy. “We Germans need to rethink our attitude to children,” she says. “If we think that children and mothers should be forced to be together, and people have to be financially covered before they consider having kids, then it’s no wonder that fewer children are being born.”

Unlike the single-existence champion Kittlaus, Klinger believes that it is working parents who are most discriminated against by the current system - in their own way, they are considered just as sociopathic as those childless singles. But the one thing that these outcasts agree on is this: the mass hysteria about low birth rates is a calculated attempt to push them into the maternity ward.

Exberliner (editor@exberliner.com)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

16:44 January 22, 2010 by Furor Teutonicus
XX “People born during the baby boom in the 1950s and 1960s will be retiring around 2015, 2020. XX

Not very good at maths is he?

I was born 1960, and therefore will not be "retiring" until 2025 at the EARLIEST.

2030 if the retirement age is 70.
17:03 January 22, 2010 by fritzwiz
In a recent visit to Berlin, a two week apartment swap, we were amazed at the single beds pushed together with twin duvets. There is an abyss in between which makes snuggling your bed mate difficult. Our comment at the time was, "how does the German birth rate survive this?" Two singles pushed together is not a double bed. A double bed with a single double duvet or top sheet and blanket promotes cuddling which is the first step for those inclined to have children. Ach du lieber !

17:19 January 22, 2010 by OkieinBerlin
Fritzwiz, I agree with you entirely -- I've hated these

disappointing German "double beds" for years now

and have asked the same question: Where is the

pleasure in sharing these poor things?
18:15 January 22, 2010 by michael4096
So, all of those decrying the rise of the immigrant, I hope you have your pants off trying to do your bit.

More seriously, the present bavarian 'race' was is the result of a mass migration up the danube, from somewhere, about 3000 years ago. As was the current bugarian peoples (BAV ~= BUL, linguistically.) Which is one way of saying that unlike the headline: Germany Is Dying Out - it is saying that that germany will probably change as it accepts immigrants in order to survive. Which, I accept, is inviting millions of troll-like replies like "We will all be sharia'd" or something equally absurd. Or, we can say that bavaria is not like bulgaria and we both have full control of our destinies and there is no reason to suppose that the late 21st century germany should be anything other than german - with more döners..
18:36 January 22, 2010 by frankiep
"Too many people in this world already. I only recently rea that having children is not good for the environment..."

Not this stupid, horseshit argument again. As if we needed anymore proof that the global warming, or climate change, or whatever the hell it is we are supposed to be calling it now, eco-nutjobs don't love the environment so much as they hate humanity.
19:40 January 22, 2010 by derExDeutsche
its hard to have kids when you hate yourself for being " privileged Westerners".

the progressive "I hate myself and everything my culture stands for(marriage), the only people worse are the fat stupid Americans" crew in Germany seems to be the standard edition these days. Thanks, Self Loathing!
21:00 January 22, 2010 by wxman
Germany is NOT dying out. GERMANS are dying out. I've commented on this subject before here till I'm blue in the face, so I won't go on...
21:30 January 22, 2010 by JHarris
Right, get f**king everybody!
23:45 January 22, 2010 by mit141284
Its simple, if you want to find young, smart, potentially able Germans, you only have to venture as far as Australia and you will see many who have been offered jobs and are now living and working full time in Australia and even New Zealand. In fact, I know of a lot who have been offered permanant residency by the Australian Government and are plying their trades all along the East Coast. However, I am looking to escape overcrowded Britain, and to be given the opportunity to work and live in your country, I would rip that persons hands off and I would become German first. The right environment exists here for many Germans to be reproductive at ease, the right infrastructure, the right levels of economy, and I would rather my kids grew up here then in Britain.

From a Brit who loves things all German and Vorsprung Durch Technik.
23:54 January 22, 2010 by Logic Guy
Well, I have visited Germany twice now and I've met many German women while traveling around the US. And often they say that German men aren't nice to them. This, and the overall disrecpect for German women is surely part of the reason why they don't have babies. They simply don't want to lay next to a man who does not treat them with kindness.

Most German women are beautiful and wonderful beings.

Without a doubt, if German men were to realize this, then this issue about the German race dying out would become a thing of the past.
03:36 January 23, 2010 by Davey-jo
Of course Germans are not dying out. You are just changing colour that's all. It's nothing to worry about. North-western Europeans will gradually become darker but they will still be German, Danish, Swedish, British and so on. They'll speak fluent German or whatever but they'll have relatives in Izmir and Calcutta or further afield. You've just got to accept change or you will be very bitter and frankly absurd.
03:57 January 23, 2010 by moorekwesi
German men are to be blamed.They're as hard as rock,making it very difficult for their fraus to enjoy baby-making.

i also heard,the Maenner invest in engineering instead of baby-making processes.

by all standards,German women are beautiful and sweet.
09:04 January 23, 2010 by derExDeutsche

no doubt you are amazing!

09:09 January 23, 2010 by Schnuckel
Now, can Sandra Bullock please have her dual-citizenship? ;-)
11:16 January 23, 2010 by strahlungsamt
Hey Germany, let's get your priorities right here!

There are not enough jobs to go around for the fewer kids you're having.

The kids you have are not motivated to better themselves anymore.

The rents on German apartments are too high in cities where there are jobs. Every kid means an extra room and more rent.

When you had jobs, you made sure everyone was living on Sozialhilfe and Arbeitslosengeld and not working.

So, if you want kids:

1. Create decent jobs.

2. Lower rents on apartments.

3. Make wages higher than 400 euros a month.
11:43 January 23, 2010 by becnal
Mathematically speaking, population growth is a function of the number and behaviour of females, not males, as long as you have at least one in the society.
14:17 January 23, 2010 by Happybabe
As far as i know there a lot of women want to have kids. but in order to procreate a woman needs a man. Unfortunately, statistics say that there are millions of man more than woman in Germany. How to make up this problem? there has been a argument that foreign students should be kept in Germany by providing with Jobs according to their education. Presently it is not possible but if someone thinks about the future the above proposition needs to be considered by policy makers.
17:24 January 23, 2010 by cklb
@ #24

23:54 January 22, 2010 by Logic Guy

Well I agree that it is not only the femals fault that we have such a low reproduction rate. But I disagree that all German man treat their woman or girlfriend without kindness. If you reffer to the "beautiful and wonderful beings", they normally get the most daring man which often happen to be not the nicest one for a relationship... (said by a timid man :)
20:17 January 23, 2010 by BR549
This article is a farce and so are most of the opinions I'veread here....
03:09 January 24, 2010 by Davey-jo
@ BR549

You are so right; and that includes my opinion; which has now changed .....
06:38 January 24, 2010 by SilberFuchs
Not to worry. A declining, contracted or stable population is healthy for many reasons. Regress to Germany of the 1970-60-50's. There is NO need to import foreign laborers - most everything has been built already, and with German quality will last for decades to come. Repatriate dual citizens. Concentrate on the good life, enjoy the extra lebensraum. Look at the positive aspects. No need to venture into further social engineering - is this the role of government?

Here is an interesting chart:

14:29 January 24, 2010 by Dan Quixote
There are 50 million Americans of German descent, and I'm guessing at least 10 million of them would move to Germany if offered citizenship, German lessons and moving expenses. Ireland, India and China have all had successful programs to lure back Americans who had come from those countries, why not Germany?

15:43 January 24, 2010 by mixxim
Beautiful German ladies, lots of Catholics, A german Pope - what's gone wrong? Perhaps the men fancy each other?
22:11 January 24, 2010 by SilberFuchs
@ kato

I like the way you can so easily move the goal posts and "simply set the retirement age to 70-75, minimum". Sure, what superhuman engineered species suddenly can work an extra 10-15 years just so that others can have an easy life? A very perverted concept!

Why not "simply" print more money? I hear you shudder, however, it's the best way to tax everyone (increase national debt) and share the burden equally, without the politics of punishing any one group, and the bureaucracy of redistribution. It would also stimulate the economy and generate associated state income that will go a long way to pay off the debt.

00:00 January 25, 2010 by alteman
printing money?increase national debt? means following what UK did?
01:34 January 25, 2010 by lordwilliams629
I see many problems with the german culture, one of the first and biggest problems is that many ethnic germans look at the german people on a citizen basis, in other words if a ethnic iranian has a german passport, well he's called a german. When in fact that iranian is not a real german. Until people in germany and the rest of europe start indentfying with what their true ethnic culture is and quit letting every third world person come in and change it, all your countrys in europe are going to become is a middle eastern style land and it's all because their willing to take it and your willing to give it away.
15:22 January 25, 2010 by Frenemy
@the_lord629: Thats a very interesting PoV coming from an alleged American. ("nation of immigrants", "cultural melting-pot", and all that jazz).

I'm curious, what is "American culture" according to you?
16:17 January 25, 2010 by lordwilliams629
Good question frenemy, but first you to are an american so don't play otherwise, phony isn't real. Anyway our culture origanlly came from more than one part of europe,so we were a multi european people "that in itself was our culture" we are and was never just one culture as germany, england, france, ext, ext, was and still is to an extent. Now as far as my country which is also your country, we have a certain melting pot of people who are coming into our country and not wanting to learn our languge, they want to stay seperate, they are hostile of everything we built this country on. These are not the ellis island type immagrants who wanted to be true blue americans. See I don't have to keep going on with examples to you, your an american you know exactly where i'm coming from. We to are like europe we have people mainly from third world countrys who want only their culture and theirs only, and like germany and the rest europe there are to many liberals like you that are more than willing to give it away. So tell me frenemy on the original question of germany is an iranian with a german passport a real true german by blood? is he part of the true bavarian culture?
17:09 January 25, 2010 by Frenemy

Do I need to scan and upload a copy of my passport before you actually believe that I'm not American and don't live CONUS??

And I can let slide the majority of your insulting quips, but I draw the line at you calling me a "liberal".

"is an iranian with a german passport a real true german by blood? is he part of the true bavarian culture?"

...Thats so typical American, you think all of Germany is Munich and Weizen Bier!!
17:54 January 25, 2010 by lordwilliams629
Look frenemy i've read many of your words and they are not that of a person who is not american. The only way I could be wrong on that point is if your canadian, but even canadians have certain styles which i've never seen in your words. Let me bring up one small of many points in your words and thoughts, ok you say you draw the line on me calling you a liberal, that comment right there is not something most non americans would be insulted by much less have an opinion on, that comment is something for the most part an american would take issue with. Does that confirm my point no it don't but it is a clue as to who you more than likely are, and i'm using that little point as one of many examples that pertain to who you are. Now me, yes i'm american I live in a town about 120 miles sw of chicago called dixon illinios, in fact I live about 1 mile from ronald reagans boyhood home. Its also the town he claimed as his hometown even though he was born in tampico illinios which is about 20 miles from me. Anyway that aside you still havn't answered my german question you only called it typical, answer it i'm sure some germans would like see your thought on that point as well.
18:09 January 25, 2010 by Frenemy
So now I'm a Canuck??!! We're just moving from insult to insult here huh?

Let me clear this up for you: I'm a German citizen from birth, my parents have different ethnic backgrounds, I received an anglophonic education (Elementary/Secondary: Standard British 8-4-4, University: American "Ivy League", and I got my professional/career training from assorted NATO spec-ops schools)

Making any progress on your little "puzzle"? ;-)
18:35 January 25, 2010 by lordwilliams629
Man you really are in dreamland "Ivy League school" give me a break. Look I don't think your canadian I ment at best, and you know what I mean. Anyway you call my question that of a typical american, yet you still won't answer it, if your an Ivy leaguer you should have no problem answering that question you just keep avoiding it, so I only assume im right you know it and you just don't want to insult your islamic freinds. Don't you have b..alls. Or did your wife take them when you got married.
20:19 January 25, 2010 by Frenemy
email address please. (I will send transcripts and scanned copy of my ID ASAP....)
21:13 January 25, 2010 by lordwilliams629
21:29 January 25, 2010 by Frenemy
(documents sent)
06:33 January 31, 2010 by rush
Generally, the most important statistic as to whether a people/nation/ethnic identity is growing and developing strength, is the average number of children the women of each generation are having and raising (with fathers of that people). Women so much hold the key and the heart of the nation. (Of course the men keeping the nation from being invaded is also critical, and geography and the general capability originating from the genes of the people are important.)

A women to child ration (fertility) of 1.4 and the people are shrinking by a third per generation. A ratio of 3 and the nation feels its bounding capabilities.

It is good to gleam from this article that warning bells are ringing in Germany that this wonderful, impressive, and honorable people are endangering themselves and their future as a people by failing to sufficiently create their next generations.

The approach and tone of the article, that the concern is excessive, that alien immigration (invasion) will compensate for the fewer inherent children of the nation being born, is a call to continue down an immensely dangerous path. "Go to sleep, it's so much easier' it seems to say.

Alien immigration is especially dangerous when the proceeding generations of the national people are fewer. The important question is not whether pensions adjustments may occur, when the vitality and even long term existence of the inherent nation is becoming a question.
13:24 January 31, 2010 by Talonx
Great lines from the usual scum: A collection of blatantly idiotic comments

Furor Teutonicus,

"Oh NOOO! You don't mean we are going to get more of this cold, fluffy, white global warming dust, and temperatures under 0° for nearly a full month with only one day at 2+° if there are more kids do you?"

(let's just disregard the southern hemisphere and that whole above winter-time average temp in the whole of the area above the arctic circle)

Logic Guy,

"Well, I have visited Germany twice now and I've met many German women while traveling around the US. And often they say that German men aren't nice to them."

(I'm pretty sure no women have ever talked to this man)


"German men are to be blamed.They're as hard as rock,making it very difficult for their fraus to enjoy baby-making."

(isn't being hard as rock actually a solution?)


"I see many problems with the german culture, one of the first and biggest problems is that many ethnic germans look at the german people on a citizen basis, in other words if a ethnic iranian has a german passport, well he's called a german. When in fact that iranian is not a real german."

(there was this other dude that talked like this, 'volkerung oder bevolkerung", last name started with an H, I think)


"Alien immigration is especially dangerous when the proceeding generations of the national people are fewer"

(see above)

I'll be doing this from now on.
16:04 January 31, 2010 by cladrastis
Anyone crazy enough to suggest that foreign immigration will be a net gain for Germany should come visit any large American city. The reality on the street is far different from what Hollywood would have you believe. Crime here is about 95% "ethnic" in character. Our schools are failing because they are about 50% ethnic. Read about what is happening to your cousins in S. Africa, read about Zimbabwe, read about Detroit; know your history. Read Cochran and Harpending's The 10,000 Year Explosion.

The German people are a fantastically traumatized ethnic group. If you really want your country to look like the USA, if you want the German people to be as stupid, brainwashed, and materialistic as Americans, then by all means, continue to walk down the current path, guided by the (mis)ruling parties.

Wake up Germany. (visit www.majorityrights.com, www.toqonline.com, www.occidentaldissent.com for another perspective on the trajectory of Western civilization)
09:14 February 1, 2010 by Talonx
Cladrasti ever heard of bolshevism (russian: 'majority')?

Aside from that, the 'ethnic' (you put it in single quotes not me :) ) crimes spoken of are more properly associated with socio-economic status caused by lackluster imigration policies and endemic racism, these two things converge to provide for an unfair disadvantage.
22:54 February 1, 2010 by SeekTruth
Go ahead, and flood your country with third-world immigrants, do it, and in 20 years Germany and much of Europe will be like the Yugoslavia war.

Want to know what it'll be like living in that kind of society? Move your German family to the "multi-cultural" area in Detroit, New Orleans, or Chicago, or LA, etc. Do it ... prove to me that I'm wrong.

Third-world people are tribal - they're proud of their culture, they're proud of who they are, they see value in who they are, they promote their culture, and they have babies, lots of them.

As for Germans and Europeans? They're ashamed of themselves, they have the self-image of a person who sees no value in his or herself. And they refuse to have kids.

Why is it that America, Canada, Australia, and Europe are willingly flooding their lands with third-world immigrants who will inherit those lands and control the futures of Euro peoples ... and yet ... look at Asia?

They're not naive enough to do this. Their birth rates are extremly low too. It is Asia who will rule the future - because they are tribal, they are proud of their culture and they don't allow foreign people's to colonize their lands.
07:34 February 2, 2010 by euroamerican
White people believe that everyone is basically the same. That's a major false assumption which will cause all kinds of trouble down the road. No African/ Chinese/ Eskimo can ever really be a German, or a European, other than an 'honorary German' or 'honorary European'. The current infatuation with multiculturalism is only occurring in white countries. No one is advocating that millions of non-Africans move to Africa, or millions of non-Asians move to Asia. This is only happening in white countries. Whenever any white person complains they are immediately accused of racism. Anti-racism equals anti-white. Just wait until the non-European population reaches 40 -50%. But by then it will be too late. Open your eyes, folks. It's plain as day.
02:07 September 11, 2012 by gt0520b
European (aka white) people are very intellectually capable but our good, old-fashioned, roll-up-your-sleeves and do housework and raise kids mentality has faded and has been replaced by a weak and impatient approach to life. Anything that requires more than a point-and-click of a button at a computer screen or that isn't 'easy' is avoided. Women can say all they want about men not treating them well and there is some truth in that. But many white women are pre-occupied with material wealth and free time. They have no idea of the death sentence they are condemning our European race. Shame on you.
Today's headlines
Anger as Berlin scraps 'Armenia genocide' concert in Turkey
The Dresden Symphony Orchestra. Photo: DPA

Germany's foreign ministry Tuesday scrapped a planned symphony performance on the Armenian "genocide" in its Istanbul consulate, sparking accusations that it was caving in to Turkish pressure.

Obama to visit Berlin in last presidential trip to Germany
President Barack Obama and Chancellor Angela Merkel during a Berlin trip in 2013. Photo: DPA.

The White House announced on Tuesday that US President Barack Obama will be paying one last unexpected visit to the German capital - his last before he leaves office.

Hostility towards minorities 'widespread in Bavaria'
A village in southern Bavaria. Photo: DPA.

Hate and hostility towards groups deemed to be different are not just sentiments felt by fringe extremists, a new report on Bavaria shows.

Hated RB Leipzig emerge as shock challengers to Bayern
RB Leipzig. Photo: DPA

RB Leipzig's remarkable unbeaten start to the Bundesliga season has seen them suddenly emerge at the head of the pack chasing reigning champions and league leaders Bayern Munich.

Munich taxi driver in hospital after attack by British tourists
Photo: DPA

A taxi driver had to be hospitalized in Munich on Monday evening after three British tourists refused to pay their fare and then attacked him.

German police carry out nationwide anti-terror raids
Police outside a building in Jena during raids on Tuesday. Photo: DPA

Police forces in five German states carried out raids on Tuesday morning with the aim of tackling the financing of terror groups, police in Thuringia have reported.

The Local List
10 ways German completely messes up your English
Photo: DPA

So you've mastered German, but now it's time to learn English all over again.

Iconic German church being eroded away by human urine
Ulm Minster towering over the rest Ulm surrounding the Danube. Photo: Pixabay

It will now cost you €100 to spend a penny. That’s if you get caught choosing to pee against the world-famous Ulm Minster.

German small arms ammo exports grow ten-fold
Photo: DPA

The government has come in for criticism after new figures revealed that Germany exported ten times the quantity of small arms ammunition in the first half of 2016 as in the same period last year.

14-year-old stabs 'creepy clown' in prank gone wrong
File photo: DPA.

A 16-year-old in Berlin decided he wanted to scare some friends, but his plot backfired in a violent way.

Germany's 10 most weird and wonderful landmarks
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd