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The athlete, Nadja Drygalla, a rower on the German Olympic team, volunteered to leave the Olympic Village last week after a discussion with officials about her boyfriend’s extreme right-wing political activities.
Ms. Drygalla’s boyfriend, Michael Fischer, himself a former competitive rower, was a candidate last year in a regional election for the far-right National Democratic Party and is part of an extremist group known as the Rostock National Socialists. “I have no connection to his circle of friends and this scene, and I reject it completely,” Ms. Drygalla, 23, said in an interview with dpa, a German news agency.
Thomas de Maizière, Germany’s defense minister, said that while he welcomed Ms. Drygalla’s statement distancing herself from right-wing views, he believed some people had “crossed the line” in screening the friends and associates of athletes. Ms. Drygalla appeared shaken and vulnerable, fighting back tears as she tried to explain herself in the interview. “I’m not doing well,” she said, “the last few days have been pretty stressful and pretty surprising.”
...he believed some people had “crossed the line” in screening the friends and associates of athletes.
But anyhow, the Rostock National Socialists are really one of the worst groups of neo nazis in Germany
Recriminations over neo-Nazi activities, long a feature of German public discourse, have grown particularly acute this summer. There have been a series of resignations by senior law enforcement officials over the failure to stop a decade-long crime spree by the extreme-right National Socialist Underground, whose members have killed 10 people and robbed numerous banks. Investigators never caught up with the group. Instead, the two leading members died at their own hands, and a third gave herself up last year in the wake of a failed bank robbery.
Embarrassing investigative failures during the group’s active years have been compounded by reports of bungled efforts to cover up miscues through shredded and misplaced documents. The head of the federal criminal police will retire at the end of the year as a result. The chief of Germany’s domestic intelligence agency stepped down last month.