Flag burning

Germany’s flag burning ban is a threat to freedom of expression

Germany’s national parliament has made the public burning of the European Union flag and flags of foreign countries punishable by up to three years in jail, classing it as a hate crime. In a vote last Thursday, the German parliament made the act of defiling foreign flags equal to the crime of defiling the German flag. The new law also applies to acts of defilement other than burning, such as publicly ripping a flag up. The initiative for this legislative change dates back to 2017 when protesters in Berlin burned the Israeli flag to emphasise their outrage about the United States’ support of Israel, causing indignation in parts of German