AEven in the face of terrorism, several hundred police officers protect the frenzied action at the height of the Hessian street carnival every day. New Interior Minister Roman Poseck (CDU) told the German Press Agency in Wiesbaden: “We have no evidence of a concrete terrorist threat at the carnival. Nevertheless, there is an abstract threat.” This has increased as a result of radicalization, especially the growth of the far right, and international developments.

“We are also affected by Hamas's attack on Israel with its consequences for the Middle East and Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine. We experience emotionality and violent demonstrations in our streets,” Poseck added. It also includes the “threat of escalation.”

Abstract attack threat

The security agencies are well positioned and are doing everything possible to ensure that “the abstract threat of an attack does not materialize here”. The state's former top judge added: “Throughout the carnival weekend, police forces from all Hesse district headquarters and Hesse police headquarters will be deployed, with daily totals in the mid-three-digit range.”

Poseck explained: “For various extremist movements, the attraction of public carnival events is primarily that these events are attended by many people and offer ample opportunities to commit crimes.” Police are monitoring the situation closely and are taking into account “risk-related findings” from previous major events.

After a driver was killed and nearly 90 people injured during the 2020 Rose Monday parade in Volkmarsen, North Hesse, the state government launched a special funding program, “Access Blocks Against Vehicle Attacks in Public Space,” according to Poseck. In the years 2021–2024, the state will allocate approximately 900,000 euros for protective elements to secure cities and public spaces.

According to the Minister of the Interior, it is the joint responsibility of the organizers, municipalities and the police to ensure the happy party of fools with as much security as possible. Under the brand “Safely together at events”, the police is already “ensuring a closer integration of all persons involved in prevention work to further improve agreements and joint approach”.