Berlin (dpa) - The interior department of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania may soon face new problems after the sudden departure of its long-time minister Lorenz Caffier.
The head of the Office for the Protection of the Constitution, Reinhard Müller, so enraged the members of the Bundestag's committee of inquiry into the terrorist attack on Berlin's Breitscheidplatz on Friday night that they were considering imposing a fine.
They all accuse Müller of not fully answering their questions about a note that was suppressed in his authority in 2017.
This tip came from an informant for the protection of the constitution in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania for the Islamist scene.
He allegedly overheard in Berlin in February 2017 that the later Christmas market bomber Anis Amri is said to have received support from a Berlin family with Arab roots who are in a criminal environment in preparing the attack and then fleeing Berlin.
An employee of the Office for the Protection of the Constitution did not find this advice entirely absurd, because information from a foreign secret service had already been given in 2016 about Islamist tendencies in the family.
The employee fell on deaf ears from his direct superior.
In any case, based on previous knowledge, the information was not passed on to the investigators who were involved in the attack on Breitscheidplatz.
Amri shot a truck driver in Berlin on December 19, 2016.
The Tunisian Islamist raced with the truck through the Christmas market at the Memorial Church, where he killed eleven other people.
Müller explained in the committee that the information was "inconclusive" and that the information "did not match the actual course of events".
But whoever decided at the time not to pass on the information did not say it.
"Müller has unlawfully denied admissible questions from the members of the committee," said the chairwoman of the left-wing parliamentary group, Martina Renner.
The committee therefore plans to impose a fine.
The committee also decided that Müller must appear again as a witness.
Interior State Secretary Thomas Lenz and ex-Minister Lorenz Caffier are also to be interviewed from Schwerin.
The incident came to light because the employee who took the advice seriously at the time had finally informed the federal authorities about it himself in 2019.
Agenda committee meeting