Petry in 2015
|Chairwoman of Alternative für Deutschland|
4 July 2015
1 June 1975
Dresden, East Germany
|Political party||Alternative für Deutschland (AfD)|
|Domestic partner||Marcus Pretzell (2015-present)|
|Education||University of Reading
University of Göttingen
|Occupation||Chemist, businesswoman, politician|
She was formerly one of three party spokespersons from 2013 to 2015, and became leader in 2015 by displacing the party's founder Bernd Lucke after an internal power struggle; Lucke subsequently left the party and said it has "fallen irretrievably into the wrong hands" after Petry's election. Petry is noted for her anti-Muslim views and for her calls to ban minarets, and for arguing that German police should use firearms "as a last resort" to prevent illegal border-crossings. She is a chemist and small businesswoman by education and professional background.
Petry was born in Dresden, and grew up in Schwarzheide in Brandenburg near Saxony up to 1989. In 1992 her family moved to Bergkamen in Westphalia. Petry took her first degree in chemistry at the University of Reading in 1998, before attending the University of Göttingen, gaining a doctoral degree there in 2004. As noted by the news magazine Stern, she speaks fluent English.
Petry separated from her husband Sven, a Lutheran pastor, in October 2015. Her domestic partner is Marcus Pretzell. She has four children and lives in Tautenhain, Saxony. Petry published a statement in early October 2015 in which she announced that she would separate from her husband, while also noting that “much more than just friendly feelings” had developed between her and fellow party member Marcus Pretzell. Sven Petry has since joined the CDU.
Though called far-right by political scientist Cas Mudde, in her party Petry represents the national-conservative faction supporting policies of national self-determinism which are generally thought of as right-wing policies. Der Spiegel reports that her electoral success on 4 July 2015, which gave her the reins of leadership in the AfD in preference to Bernd Lucke, the founder, was made possible by the national-conservative wing of the party. Bernd Lucke's liberal-conservative wing did not have the majority.
On the subject of the political spectrum, Petry has said, "Right and left are terms that haven’t fitted for a long time." Petry believes sharia is incompatible with the "democratic and liberal order of state" and has said that the majority within her AfD favors a liberal-conservative policy.
Petry was made a source of controversy in January 2016 when asked about European and German border policies by a reporter from the regional newspaper Mannheimer Morgen. Petry initially answered that the German Border police must do their jobs by "hindering illegal entry of refugees." She then cited existing German law which states that the border police may "use firearms if necessary" to "prevent illegal border crossings". The reporter followed up on her response, using the term Schiessbefehl which means "order to shoot". Petry clarified that she did not use that term, going on to state that no policeman "wants to fire on a refugee and I don't want that either" but that border police must follow the law to maintain the integrity of European borders.
In an interview with Tim Sebastian from Deutsche Welle on 21 March 2016, Petry said she feels the German government is refusing "to take responsibility for our [Germany's] national borders," but has cautioned that if border guards ever had to use armed force, it would be the "ultima ratio [last resort]." Another argument she made in defense of her statements is that she is not the only German politician with these views, citing Boris Palmer of the Green Party. Boris Palmer has said, "Greece alone won't be capable [of defending European borders]. This can only be achieved by European border troops. And it's perfectly normal for them to be armed, as it is at almost every border."
She has recently been criticized by Lutz Bachmann of the anti-Islamic movement Pegida for supporting the right of Islamic Germans to circumcision. In a rough draft of its manifesto, the AfD had considered adopting a stance stating that male circumcision should be outlawed, but Petry said in her interview with Tim Sebastian on 21 March 2016 that this language would not be in the final draft. It must be noted that the Central Council of Jews in Germany is also in an uproar over the question of religious circumcision, stating that to give precedence to a child's self-determination over his parents' right of freedom of religion is "an unprecedented and dramatic intrusion on the right to self-determination of religious communities." This national dialogue is happening in the wake of a 2012 decision of a Higher Regional Court in Cologne, which called the circumcision of a 4-year-old boy "bodily harm." Bachmann is of the view that a man should be 18 before being able to decide whether or not he wants to be circumcised. He has also said that Petry is "scared of Germany’s past with Jewish people."
Women in society
Unlike the CDU and SPD, Petry does not believe mandatory quotas are the right way to give opportunities to women, nor does she believe they improve the chances of women having more leadership positions. She believes quotas make women unsure of whether a promotion would be made on the basis of qualifications.
On the issue of international migration, Petry is of the view that, "We [Germany and the rest of Europe] have to decide what sort of migration we want to accept." She has said, "Deciding about who's migrating and who's not, who's going to be part of a new country is, in the end, a question of borders, whether you see them, or whether you don't. When I go to France, I don't see the border, but I know it's there and I accept it, be it in terms of speed limits, or be it in terms of laws and legislation."
On 3 June 2016, Petry tweeted in mockery of German finance minister Wolfgang Schäuble; "Schäuble's nightmare: the 'incestuous' Icelanders in the quarter-final." Iceland's football team had made it to the UEFA Euro 2016 quarter-final and Schäuble had made a remark in June that if Europe were to isolate itself, this would cause Europe to degenerate into inbreeding. Iceland is largely homogeneous in terms of demographics. The Icelandic national team, which was drawn from a tiny pool of 330,000 Icelanders, had sent shock waves throughout the football commmunity when it upset the English national team in June with a 2-1 win. The Guardian reports that all of the members of the team "were brought up in the Icelandic club system."
- "AfD: Lucke-Anhänger wollen neue Partei gründen". Der Spiegel (in German). 13 July 2015. Retrieved 16 June 2016.
- "Far right AfD party says Muslims not welcome in Germany".
- "Refugees should be shot 'if necessary', says party leader in Germany". 31 January 2016.
- Petry, Frauke (2004). Charakterisierung eines neuen ATP-binding-cassette Transporters aus der ABCA-Subfamilie (PDF) (in German). University of Göttingen. p. 129. Retrieved 27 September 2013.(dissertation/curriculum vitae)
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- Lang, Thomas (8 October 2012). "Borna - Verdienstorden mit 37 Jahren". Leipziger Volkszeitung (in German). Retrieved 27 September 2013.
- "Ordensverleihung zum Tag der Deutschen Einheit" (in German). Bundespräsidialamt. 4 October 2012. Retrieved 27 September 2013.
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- "AfD-Chefin Petry trennt sich von ihrem Ehemann". Sächsische Zeitung (in German). 7 October 2015. Retrieved 15 June 2016.
- Amann, Melanie; Weiland, Severin (12 February 2016). "Angebliches Beratungsangebot: Die AfD, der Journalist und ein heikler Vorwurf". Der Spiegel (in German). Retrieved 15 June 2016.
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- Mudde, Cas (2016-03-13). "One Alternative for Germany or Many? The Mixed Message of the German State Elections". The Huffington Post.
- German right-wing leader backs citizens' right to arm themselves, Reuters.com, 20 August 2016
- Profile: German right-wing AfD leader Frauke Petry, bbc.com, 10 March 2016
- Sebastian, Tim (21 March 2016). "Transcript: Tim Sebastian interviews Frauke Petry". Deutsche Welle. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
- Mack, Steffen; Serif, Walter (30 January 2016). ""Sie können es nicht lassen!"". Mannheimer Morgen (in German). Retrieved 30 January 2016.
- Kassam, Raheem (5 April 2016). "EXCLUSIVE—PEGIDA Founder Lutz Bachmann Gives Rare Interview To Breitbart London's Raheem Kassam". Breitbart News Network. Retrieved 16 June 2016.
- "Cutting Controversy: German Court Sets New Circumcision Rules". Der Spiegel. 27 September 2013. Retrieved 14 June 2016.
- "Die Frauenquote sei "völlig unausgegoren"". Wirtschaftswoche (in German). 27 November 2014. Retrieved 14 June 2016.
- "Petry: "Inzestuöse Isländer im Viertelfinale"". Stuttgarter Nachrichten (in German). 3 July 2016. Retrieved 5 July 2016.
- Howson, Nick (3 July 2016). "France 5-2 Iceland, Uefa Euro 2016 quarter-final - Five-star Les Bleus march into Germany semi-final". Yahoo News. Retrieved 5 July 2016.
- "Abschottung Europas ließe uns "in Inzucht degenerieren"". Handelsblatt (in German). 8 June 2016. Retrieved 5 July 2016.
- "Europe: Iceland". CIA World Factbook. 20 June 2016. Retrieved 5 July 2016.
homogeneous mixture of descendants of Norse and Celts 94%, population of foreign origin 6%
- Emma Jane Kirby (19 June 2014). "Iceland's DNA: The world's most precious genes?". BBC. Retrieved 5 July 2016.
- Jason Le Miere (28 June 2016). "Iceland Soccer Team: How Tiny Island Upset England's Highly Paid Stars at Euro 2016". IB Times. Retrieved 5 July 2016.
- Davis Harper (30 January 2016). "Volcano! The incredible rise of Iceland's national football team". The Guardian. Retrieved 5 July 2016.
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