NewsGermany dreads New Year's Eve. "I'll go to sleep before midnight"

Germany dreads New Year's Eve. "I'll go to sleep before midnight"

New Year's Eve in Berlin, 2022.
New Year's Eve in Berlin, 2022.
Images source: © DPA, PAP | Christophe Gateau
ed. PC
6:06 PM EST, November 24, 2023

Last New Year's Eve, Berlin and several other German cities witnessed riots and attacks on police officers and emergency services. Given the recent situations in the country, many Germans fear a repetition this year.

Last year's New Year's Eve was chaotic for Germans. The police reported several confrontations in Berlin, Hamburg, and Frankfurt am Main, among other cities. Fireworks, Molotov cocktails, and other hazardous items were flung at the intervention officers, firefighters, and medical rescuers. The situation was significantly dangerous in the Neukölln district of Berlin, where services were lured into a trap with flaming barricades. Dozens of officers were injured, and over a hundred people involved in the capital riots were detained, most of whom were migrants.

In the past years, there have always been riots during the New Year's Eve party. However, the scale of violence on the streets was considerably lower. Considering the current state of the country - including issues with immigrants, the rise in anti-Semitism, and altercations with the police during ongoing pro-Palestinian demonstrations - concerns about Germany's future are growing.

An interview conducted by the newspaper "Bild" addressed this year's New Year's Eve with Monika Gruber, a German cabaret artist, and journalist Andreas Hock. The discussion also revisited the calls by politicians for the government to ban the use of pyrotechnic materials.

"I have tremendous respect for those who work in the police and emergency services, those who still want to help others," says Hock. He emphasizes that the introduction of a firework ban is necessary for officers to feel safe while managing the New Year's Eve festivities. "From my observations, the initiators of such New Year's Eve riots are rarely women over 60 without an immigration background", he adds, with a hint of sarcasm.

The artist, Gruber, shares similar views. "I fear this year's New Year's Eve, especially due to anti-Semitism at protests like the recent one in Essen. I'm terrified of what might happen. I'll probably go to bed before midnight," she says.

Related content