Photo of the day
"Make yourself at home"
"Refugees welcome!" read banners at a pro-migrant demonstration in Cottbus. The east-German city, 80 miles southeast of Berlin, has seen multiple criminal offenses take place due to tensions between newcomers and far-right extremists. Arab refugees and Germans marched in a flurry of rainbow flags and multicolored balloons on Saturday – a much more pleasant sight than the anti-migrant demo opposing it, dense with signs bearing Islamaphobic and xenophobic slogans. Source:
Number of the day
Monday marks the 10,316th day since the Berlin Wall fell – symbolic because that's the same number of days for which the concrete barrier stood, historically dividing the city physically and philosophically. The milestone was quietly celebrated on social media under the hashtag #Zirkeltag, or "circle day," symbolizing the equal measuring of time. The Bundesrat, Chancellor Merkel's spokesman and others tweeted their remembrance.
Graph of the day
Show me the pension money
Germany is a world leader in government pension spending, doling out around 75% of the average earner's total pension income – a much higher share than among other large OECD economies. At the ripe old age of 65, Germans can start claiming OAP. However this contribution system, which accounts for about 10% of GDP, does pose economic pressure as a large baby boomer population inches closer to retirement.
Person of the day
The Alternative for Germany (AfD), a party of the populist far right, defended its parliamentary manager over the weekend, despite his voting against the party on an important bill on refugee family reunification. Bernd Baumann voted in a "mistaken way," an AfD spokesman told German magazine Der Spiegel, accidentally supporting the initiative to allow 1,000 direct relatives of asylum seekers to also settle in Germany every month starting from August. Source: