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German army: Bar extremists

FRANKFURT, Sept. 16 (JTA) – The German army wants to stop drafting recruits who have been sentenced for extremist activities. Officials have confirmed they are examining how to collect the criminal records of potential draftees. German law currently prevents government ministries from obtaining this type of information. The country’s Defense Ministry recently reported that right-wing incidents involving army soldiers rose from 46 in 1996 to 80 in the first eight months of this year. One of the most violent incidents was a racially motivated attack last March in the northern German city of Detmold. In addition, five army soldiers were convicted in June of seriously injuring one Italian and two Turks. One man was sentenced to 14 months in prison, and the other four were given suspended sentences. Officials found right-wing propaganda in the homes of three of the convicted soldiers.