Court orders foreign press access to German trial

AP News
Posted: Apr 12, 2013 2:12 PM

BERLIN (AP) — Germany's highest court on Friday decided that currently shut-out foreign media must have seats at the trial of a woman suspected in a far-right murder spree that has shaken the country.

Beate Zschaepe is alleged to be the sole surviving member of a neo-Nazi trio suspected of killing nine businessmen and a policewoman since 2000.

The case has generated intense media interest, especially in Turkey, because eight victims had Turkish roots.

The Munich regional court allocated 50 press seats for the trial on a first-come, first-served basis, but none went to foreign outlets.

Following a request from the Turkish newspaper Sabah, Germany's constitutional court on Friday ordered that at least three seats go to foreign media.

It didn't specify which foreign media will get access to the trial, which starts Wednesday. But in its reasoning, the court said that Turkish media had a special interest in independently reporting on the trial because "several victims of the alleged crimes are of Turkish descent."