The AfD remains excluded from the Munich Security Conference this year. In addition, conference leader Christoph Heusgen of the parties represented in the Bundestag did not invite the Alliance Sahra Wagenknecht (BSW) to the world's most important meeting of politicians and experts on security policy. “The BSW representatives in the Bundestag are not elected as BSW politicians but as left-wing politicians,” Heusgen told the German Press Agency in explanation.
For a long time it was customary for politicians from all parties represented in the Bundestag to be invited to the conference, which this year takes place from February 16th to 18th. Heusgen deviated from this practice last year when he made his debut as conference leader and did not invite any AfD politicians. “I said back then that I didn’t want to roll out the red carpet for a right-wing extremist party,” he told dpa. "There was some wrinkling of the nose. But I believe that my decision last year was the right one - especially after the recent revelations. I will therefore not be inviting the AfD this year either."
According to Heusgen, the right-wing association Values Union, whose chairman Hans-Georg Maaßen is planning to found a party, also has no place at the security conference, like the newly founded BSW party. "We're not inviting either of them, so we'll just have to see how it goes."
Around 50 heads of state and government as well as around 100 ministers are expected to attend the conference at the Munich Hotel Bayerischer Hof this year. As was the case last year, the governments of Russia and Iran are not invited. "A few days ago, the Russian President said that he would be happy to negotiate, but not with this Ukrainian government. That means there is no serious willingness to talk," said Heusgen, referring to Vladimir Putin. "And that's why we said on our own initiative that we're not inviting the Russian government, but rather we're inviting Russians from non-governmental organizations, exiled politicians."
Heusgen had already done the same thing last year at the first conference after the Russian invasion of Ukraine. "When it comes to Iran, we hear from the federal government and also from the Americans that there is no interest in talks. As things stand, we are only inviting Iranians from non-governmental organizations."