The federal executive of the AfD is applying for a two-year ban from office for the member of the Bundestag Dirk Spaniel. According to WELT information, the party leadership decided in a board meeting on Monday to join the party order procedure conducted by the state board of the Baden-Württemberg AfD at the state arbitration court there. The then state executive in the southwest had already applied for the ban on offices on February 9, 2022.

According to the federal statute of the party, should the state arbitration court order the ban from office, Spaniel loses the “ability to hold any party office”. This is possible if a member violates “the statutes or the principles or rules of the party” and causes the party “a loss of reputation or damage in some other way”. Statutes of other parties also know this instrument. However, it is used extremely rarely.

Dirk Spaniel is transport policy spokesman for the parliamentary group; he is credited with being close to the formally dissolved right-wing extremist wing. Spaniel is considered an inner-party opponent of the federal chairwoman Alice Weidel, who was also state chairwoman in Baden-Württemberg until last weekend.

An AfD spokesman confirmed the support from Berlin for the party order process. “Basically, the federal board wants to support the goal of the AfD state board of Baden-Württemberg, to have the disputed facts examined by arbitration,” said the spokesman. He did not want to comment on the reasons.

“The application of the state board contains a detailed justification, which cannot be quoted publicly for data protection reasons,” he said. The federal board will deal with the allegations made against Spaniel “again in detail, which is why a corresponding test order is on the agenda of its next telephone conference”.

A document is circulating in the AfD, according to which the federal executive board had initially requested a party exclusion procedure against Spaniel. WELT has the document. It states that in addition to the ban on offices, “extending also the exclusion of the party” had been requested. The party spokesman said: “The transmitted document is not ‘real’, but an internal draft version, which was immediately corrected again in the (accidentally incorrectly transmitted) resolution wording.”

Dirk Spaniel told WELT that he did not want to comment on the regulatory measures requested.

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