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Weekly update: Munich Security Conference

Updated: Feb 3, 2021

By Jack Turner

  • The Munich Security Conference also launched on Friday, with 30 heads of states and government in attendance. High on the agenda are 'are themes such as the European Union's self-assertion, transatlantic cooperation, as well as possible consequences of a renewed era of great power competition'. More here.

  • The Bundestag adopted a bill by Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn (CDU) to improve the conditions for organ transplants. In future, clinics shall receive more time and money for organ harvesting. The draft was approved by all political groups barring the AfD.The bill fails to address Germany’s use of a controversial card system that requires donors to "opt in". This meant only 955 people in the country donated their organs to seriously ill patients after their death in 2018, and more than 10,000 seriously ill people are currently waiting for an organ transplant.In order to combat this, Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn proposed an “opt out” system in September, whereby all Germans would automatically be organ donors after their death, unless they opted out during their lifetime.

  • Elsewhere, according to the Emnid survey institute, the SPD is the second strongest political party in Germany for the first time since October. Following a record drop in support last year, where they garnered a meager 14%, the Social Democrats made gains of two percentage points compared to last week, now reaching 19%. This upturn comes after the party presented several new social policy plans, including basic pensions for low-paid workers.

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