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teleSUR/ JF

Jan 16, 2024

This is a signal "to the politicians in Berlin that things cannot continue like this," DBV President Rückwied said.

On Monday, thousands of Germans gathered in the center of Berlin to protest against the agricultural subsidy cuts implemented by the government led by Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

The German Farmers' Association (DBV) pointed out that over 30,000 people and 6,000 vehicles were protesting around the Brandenburg Gate at noon on Monday.

This is a signal "to the politicians in Berlin that things cannot continue like this," said DBV President Joachim Rückwied, who claimed that the farmers' mobilization is the largest protest since German reunification.

Rückwied reiterated his demand to the Scholz administration to withdraw the subsidy cuts in the agricultural sector, a policy announced this Christmas after the coalition of social democrats, greens, and liberals had to renegotiate the 2024 budgets.

After his speech, the Finance Minister Christian Lindner, who took the podium amid strong boos and "Go Away!" chants, explained that Germany cannot take on more debt and is compelled to increase defense spending due to the Ukraine war.

Today's mobilization marks the end of a week of decentralized protests with roadblocks across the country that are putting pressure on the German government, which maintains the plan to completely eliminate the agricultural diesel subsidy by 2026.

Marginal groups of all kinds have joined the demonstration, where individuals denying COVID and various sects distribute pamphlets. Still, above all, the presence of numerous supporters of the far-right party Alternative for Germany (AfD) stands out, waving German flags.

Andreas, a farmer from the vicinity of Hanover, said that the measures proposed by the government would cause him losses of up to 6,000 euros per year.

"Change the traffic light," he summarized his demand, repeating a popular slogan that refers colloquially to the coalition government by the colors of the constituent parties.

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