The Augsburg City Hall, Source: Depositphotos

Augsburg town hall will swap Israeli and Ukrainian flags with peace flags

Augsburg town hall will swap Israeli and Ukrainian flags with peace flags

The local authorities have decided to go neutral and not take sides in the politicization of global conflicts

The City of Augsburg announced that after Remembrance Day, on 19 November, they will remove the Israeli and Ukrainian flags in front of the town hall and replace them with two “City of Peace” flags and one “We are all Augsburg” flag on the flagpoles.

Wars, apart from being violent, are also inherently political acts and so is showing support for some side in the conflict. Raising Ukrainian and Israeli flags on the city hall facades in European cities became a common sight at the start of the respective conflicts happening in the neighbourhood.

The idea was to show support and solidarity with the side which was attacked first and had to defend itself. With the protraction of the conflicts, however, and things like pro-Palestinian protests, it became clearer that the mood on the ground was more complex given the multi-cultural makeup of many European cities.

It seems that the local government of the German city of Augsburg have realized that and took what itself will invariably be described as a controversial decision by at least some critics.

Augsburg wants to be known as City of Peace

The reason for the decision of the local authorities to rebrand the image of the Bavarian city stems from repeated attacks on the Israeli flag, which was torn down twice. This caused the officials to take the flag down at night and then hoist it back up in the mornings. However, it seems that they decided to abandon this activity altogether and to avoid stirring any more tension among the residents by deciding not to fly the flags of other countries altogether.

Naturally, some voices have already accused the authorities of bowing down to the pressure of anti-Semitism.

Augsburg's mayor Eva Weber responded that rather than symbolism, the city will concentrate on promoting concrete measures to promote peace in the city.



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