Affair Schönbohm: Apparently no disciplinary proceedings against ex-BSI boss

After the dismissal of the former President of the Federal Office for Information Security (BSI), Arne Schönbohm, the Federal Ministry of the Interior will apparently not initiate disciplinary proceedings against the top official. The Federal Ministry of the Interior (BMI) told Schönbohm’s lawyers that there was no evidence to justify such a procedure, reports Business Insider, citing government circles.

Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD) initially prohibited Schönbohm from continuing his duties in October and eventually dismissed him. Apart from the official justification that trust in Schönbohm’s administration was “permanently damaged”, the Federal Ministry of the Interior has so far failed to provide an explanation.

The ministry also does not want to confirm or comment on the letter to Schönbohm’s lawyers when asked. “The Federal Ministry of the Interior and Homeland cannot comment on personnel matters,” a spokeswoman told heise online.

Schönbohm came under pressure after a broadcast by the satirical magazine “ZDF Magazin Royale” in which moderator Jan Böhmermann tried to establish a connection between the BSI President, the “Cyber ​​Security Council Germany” (CSRD) association and Russian secret service circles. Schönbohm had co-founded the CSRD, which was controversial in political circles, but later distanced himself.

Even then, security experts and political insiders suspected that these accusations were unlikely to be sustained – and that other motives played a role: Faeser wanted to get rid of a combative expert. In the end, Schönbohm himself had asked for disciplinary proceedings in order to be able to finally clarify the allegations. Apparently this will not happen now.

Only when asked by Schönbohm’s lawyers did the Federal Ministry of the Interior concede in writing that the preliminary investigation over the past six months had “not revealed any indications” of disciplinary proceedings, reports Business Insider. This preliminary examination took significantly longer than the usual three months.

Schönbohm is now President of the much smaller Federal Academy for Public Administration (BAköV) in Brühl, which is responsible for the further training of civil servants and is assigned to the BMI. Because Schonböhm is not a political official who can easily be transferred, Faeser had to find an equivalent position for him in her area of ​​responsibility. The salary level of the BAköV President was specifically raised for this purpose.


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