Political stage in Germany is set for a new entrant, the Wagenknecht Party, spearheaded by former Left Party politician, Sahra Wagenknecht. As per SPIEGEL sources, the party is due to be officially established on January 27 and has plans to participate in the European elections as well as the upcoming state elections in Thuringia, Brandenburg, and Saxony in 2024.
Foundation of the Wagenknecht Party
The formation of the new political outfit was preceded by the establishment of the association 'Bündnis Sahra Wagenknecht' on September 26. The association's primary function was to organize the party's founding and to collect donations for the same. However, the method of its structuring has drawn criticism from party researcher Sophie Schonberger, who suggests it might be an attempt to bypass party financing laws.
Political parties in Germany are subject to restrictions when it comes to accepting donations from outside the EU. Schonberger's skepticism stemmed from the fact that 'Bild am Sonntag' reported that the association received numerous foreign donations, including those from outside Europe. Meanwhile, the association insists it strictly adheres to party law, accepting only those donations that comply with the set limits for non-EU countries.
The Stance of the Association
The association's treasurer, IT entrepreneur Ralph Suikat from Karlsruhe, had previously stated they wouldn't accept non-EU donations to avoid legal risks. The association's account is with a Volksbank in Pirna, Saxony. The local Volksbank, known for its Russian connections, was chosen for its decentralized organization. Despite the controversies, the association, in just seven weeks, has reportedly amassed about 1.1 million euros.