Joschka Fischer To Be probed for perjury

Prosecutors have notified Germany's parliament that they intend to investigate allegations that Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer lied during the trial of a former fellow radical from his militant days in the 1970s, judicial officials are quoted by Western news agencies as saying today. Officials in the Hesse state justice ministry, speaking on condition of anonymity, said they sent a letter to Parliament President Wolfgang Thierse about prosecutors' intent to begin a criminal investigation, which can then be started within 48 hours if there are no objections by lawmakers. The notification is needed because as a member of parliament, Mr. Fischer has immunity from prosecution. On January 16th, Mr. Fischer testified during the trial of Hans-Joachim Klein that he had never had contact with members of the violent Red Army Faction in the 1970s. The statement has been challenged in media reports, and prosecutors have received seven complaints from unidentified people alleging that Mr. Fischer lied under oath. An investigation against Mr. Fischer could threaten the governing coalition between Mr. Fischer's Greens party and Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder's Social Democrats.