“The enabling framework for civil society in Germany continues to raise rule of law concerns regarding the freedom of assembly and the financing framework for civil society groups. Tax law and jurisprudence continue to severely restrict and sanction political and critical engagement as well as advocacy work of civil society organisations.”
(2022: Civil Liberties Union for Europe, Liberties Rule of Law Report 2022 – Germany, p. 4)
For the third time, Civil Liberties Union for Europe, has published its annual report on the rule of law in the european union. This Liberties Rule of Law Report serves as a ‘shadow report’ to the European Commissions Rule of Law Report and is a result of a joint effort by members of the Civil Liberties Union and their partners. With regards to Germany, the report focusses on the anti-corruption framework and the enabling frameworks for civil societies, concluding with the following statement:
“This restrictive financing framework creates chilling effects on civil society organisations that might prevent financially less stable local organisations from engaging in public debates. Such chilling effects, as well as the generally sanction-like character of the tax law, may amount to an infringement on the right of civil society organisations to pursue political goals (provided that they do so using lawful and democratic means and provided that the aims advocated for are compatible with the fundamental principles of democracy) that is guaranteed to them as freedom of expression and freedom of association under Articles 10 and 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).”
(2022: Civil Liberties Union for Europe, Liberties Rule of Law Report 2022 – Germany, p. 10)
You can find the Country Chapter Germany here and the complete Liberties Report 2022 here.