Politician from Anti-Muslim Party in Germany Converts to Islam

A politician from a German party, known for its anti-Muslim rhetoric, converted to Islam. (Reuters)
A politician from a German party, known for its anti-Muslim rhetoric, converted to Islam. (Reuters)
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Politician from Anti-Muslim Party in Germany Converts to Islam

A politician from a German party, known for its anti-Muslim rhetoric, converted to Islam. (Reuters)
A politician from a German party, known for its anti-Muslim rhetoric, converted to Islam. (Reuters)

A politician from the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, which is known for its anti-Muslim rhetoric, has quit his position from the party’s board and converted to Islam.

Arthur Wagner will remain a member of the party.

“Mr. Wagner resigned on January 11 from the state board on his own volition. Only afterwards was it known that he had converted to Islam,” said Daniel Friese, a spokesman of the party.

The party said it stood for the constitutional right of religious freedom, regardless of Wagner’s conversion.

“Mr. Wagner could also choose another religion,” Friese told Berliner Zeitung, noting that Wagner had resigned from the board two weeks ago.

Wagner declined to comment on his conversion. “He does not want to speak with the press. He believes it is a private affair,” the party spokesman said.

Berlin daily Tagesspiegel reported Wednesday that Wagner, who joined AfD shortly after it was founded in 2013, has in the past been active in a group assisting refugees.

The AfD became Germany’s third largest party in parliament after last September’s general election.

The Afd has campaigned against what it considers the "Islamization" of Germany because of immigration and higher birth rates among the country's Muslim population.



US Secret Service Chief Admits Failure in Trump Shooting

US Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle attends a House of Representatives Oversight Committee hearing on the security lapses that allowed an attempted assassination of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, on Capitol Hill in Washington, US, July 22, 2024. REUTERS/Kevin Mohatt
US Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle attends a House of Representatives Oversight Committee hearing on the security lapses that allowed an attempted assassination of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, on Capitol Hill in Washington, US, July 22, 2024. REUTERS/Kevin Mohatt
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US Secret Service Chief Admits Failure in Trump Shooting

US Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle attends a House of Representatives Oversight Committee hearing on the security lapses that allowed an attempted assassination of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, on Capitol Hill in Washington, US, July 22, 2024. REUTERS/Kevin Mohatt
US Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle attends a House of Representatives Oversight Committee hearing on the security lapses that allowed an attempted assassination of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, on Capitol Hill in Washington, US, July 22, 2024. REUTERS/Kevin Mohatt

US Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle admitted to Congress on Monday that she and her agency failed when a would-be assassin wounded Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump.

"We failed," Cheatle said in testimony before the House of Representatives Oversight Committee.

"The assassination attempt on former President Donald Trump on July 13th is the most significant operational failure at the Secret Service in decades."

Republican and Democratic lawmakers called on her to resign, calls that she rebuffed, saying at one point, "I think that I am the best person to lead the Secret Service at this time."

Asked about why there were no agents on the roof where the shooter was located or if the Secret Service used drones to monitor the area, Cheatle said she is still waiting for the investigation to play out, prompting groans and outbursts from members on the committee.
“Director Cheatle, because Donald Trump is alive, and thank God he is, you look incompetent," said Rep. Mike Turner, R-Ohio. “If he were killed you would look culpable.”
Trump was wounded in the ear, and two other attendees were injured after Thomas Matthew Crooks climbed atop the roof of a nearby building and opened fire.
The Secret Service has acknowledged it denied some requests by Trump's campaign for increased security at his events in the years before the assassination attempt. But, Cheatle said that there were “no assets denied" for the Trump rally on July 13.

"The level of security provided for the former president increased well before the campaign and has been steadily increasing as threats evolve," Cheatle said.

She declined to answer specific questions about the day's security plan from openly frustrated Republicans and Democrats, saying the matter was being investigated internally.

Monday's hearing marked the first round of congressional oversight of the attempted assassination.

On Wednesday, FBI Director Christopher Wray will appear before the House Judiciary Committee. And House Speaker Mike Johnson is also due to unveil a bipartisan task force to serve as a nexus point for House investigations.