A successor to Hans-Georg Maaßen is apparently found. Thomas Haldenwang, the former Vice President of the Federal Office for protection of the Constitution, should take over the chief post at the domestic secret service, as "Focus Online" and Ard report. The staff decided the information according to Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer. Maaßen also preferred him as a successor, so "Focus Online".
A confirmation from Home Office there is not yet. A spokesman for the agency stressed on request of the news agency dpa: "There is still no decision made." Even the protection of the Constitution has not commented on the matter.
CDU politician considers reports to be "plausible"
For the CDU security politician Patrick Sensburg the message sounds "plausible". "I would consider this a very good decision," said Sensburg to the "Handelsblatt". Haldenwang has "done an excellent job" in recent years, is also "politically recognized" and is valued by colleagues in the Bundestag, the expert said in the report. Sensburg is also a member of the Parliamentary Control Panel for Federal Intelligence.
Support for Haldenwang also comes from the Green Party Vice Constantine of Notz. Haldenwang is well known in parliament. "I'm looking forward to the cooperation," said of Notz the editorial network Germany (RND). "I wish the new president a good hand to tackle things resolutely, restore lost confidence, and maintain an open relationship with parliamentary oversight," he said.
André Hahn from the left: "That would not be a restart"
But not everyone is satisfied with the possible Maaßen succession. The left-wing member of the Bundestag and intelligence expert Andre Hahn said in the RND: "I would be very surprised by this personnel decision, which would not be a restart and the wrong signal." Hahn therefore hopes that the relationship with the State Office for the Protection of the Constitution improves. But Haldenwang does not stand for that – he is much too close to Maaßen, "said the left-wing politician.
Haldenwang has been Vice President of the Protection of the Constitution since August 2013. The 58-year-old lawyer worked from 1991 to 2000 and from 2006 to 2009 also in the Federal Ministry of the Interior. After that, the native Wuppertal changed to the protection of the constitution.
After criticizing his comments on xenophobic riots in Chemnitz, Maassen has to vacate his post as constitutional protection chief. He will be the Special Representative for European and International Affairs at the Ministry of the Interior. The personality had led to a heated argument within the grand coalition. Seehofer had announced that he wanted to present a successor at the end of October or the beginning of November.