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Pronouncement of the judgment in the Proceedings concerning the prohibition of the National Democratic Party of Germany (NPD) on 17 January 2017 at 10:00 a.m.

Press Release No. 79/2016 of 03 November 2016

Reference: 2 BvB 1/13

The Second Senate of the Federal Constitutional Court will, based on the oral hearing of 1, 2 and 3 March 2016 (cf. press release no. 90/2015 of 7 December 2015), pronounce its judgment on 

Tuesday, 17 January 2017, 10:00 am
in the courtroom of the Federal Constitutional Court,
Schlossbezirk 3, 76131 Karlsruhe.

Important Information: Journalists may only send their accreditation requests between Thursday, 10 November 2016, 12:00 am and Thursday, 15 December 2016, 12:00 am on the form provided, by telefax to +49 721 9101-550. Media will be divided into three different groups. Please find the complete accreditation requirements and the agenda of the oral hearing in the annex of this press release.

Information for Interested Citizens 

Interested citizens wishing to attend the pronouncement of the judgment are welcome but must register at the following address: 

              Mr Stadtler
              Postfach 1771, 76006 Karlsruhe, Germany
              Phone: +49 721 9101-400
              Telefax: +49 721 9101-461
              Email: besucherdienst@bundesverfassungsgericht.de

The registration must indicate the person’s surname, first name, date of birth, and contact data (a phone or telefax number or an email address). 

The visitors’ seats will be allocated in the order in which the registrations are received. For each registration, no more than one accompanying person may be registered.

Accreditation Requirements and Information for Journalists 


The accreditation procedure starts on Thursday, 10 November 2016, at 12:00 am. Earlier requests will not be considered, and the Federal Constitutional Court will not respond to such requests. 

The accreditation procedure ends on Thursday, 15 December 2016, at 12:00 am. After this period, accreditation is no longer possible. 

The accreditation request must be sent by telefax to +49 721 9101-550. This number operates several lines. This also applies to members of the Justizpressekonferenz Karlsruhe e.V. (JPK). Accreditation requests sent to other email addresses or telefax numbers of the Court will not be considered. 

For accreditation requests, the forms provided under


(in English) must be used. 

The form must be filled in completely. The request must indicate which of the three groups the person requesting accreditation belongs to. Upon being requested to do so, journalists must provide documentation to prove that they belong to one of the groups, e.g. by presenting a valid press card or a letter of reference issued by the medium sending the journalist. 

Accreditation requests will be considered in the order in which they are received. This will be determined by the order shown on the notice of receipt in the log report of the fax server of the telefax number +49 721 9101-550. If requests are received simultaneously, accreditation is awarded by drawing lots. 

A few days after the expiry of the deadline, the Federal Constitutional Court will notify the applicants by email whether their accreditation was successful or not. 

Availability and Allocation of Seats 

The press gallery holds a total of 42 seats for media representatives. In addition, another 32 seats in the gallery provide a view of the courtroom through a glass pane, and audio transmission from the courtroom. 

The available 74 seats are allocated as follows: 

1. In the press gallery, 15 seats are reserved in advance for full members (honorary members excepted) of the Justizpressekonferenz Karlsruhe e.V. (JPK). Each medium represented by a full member in the JPK is entitled to one of these seats. The same applies to each full member who does not represent a specific medium. A full member who represents more than one medium is only entitled to one seat.

2. For the distribution of the other 59 seats, the media is divided into three groups. The seats are allocated in the following order:

Seats no. 1, 2, 4, 5, 7, 8, and 10 each go to a medium headquartered in Germany

Seats no. 3 and 9 each go to a medium headquartered abroad

Seat no. 6 goes to a freelance journalist. All freelance journalists form part of this group, irrespective of their countries of origin. 

Subsequently, counting starts again at 1. If all applicants from an entitled group have already been considered, the respective figure is skipped. 

3. The 42 seats in the press gallery are allocated first, then, continuing the count, the 32 seats in the gallery.

4. Every properly accredited medium is allocated only one seat, at first. Another seat per medium is allocated if all properly accredited media have received a seat. The same applies to the allocation of further seats. Freelance journalists are considered within their above-mentioned group. 

General Information 

The seats in the (press) gallery must be taken by9:45 am on the respective day. If a seat has not been taken by this time, it may be reallocated for this day. Journalists who do not have a seat in the (press) gallery will have to leave the courtroom after the presiding Justice of the Senate has established the presence of the parties to the proceedings. The area outside the courtroom must be vacated. 

There will be an audio transmission from the courtroom to the press room. The press room is equipped with 60 desk workplaces. A limited number of power outlets for laptop computers is available. The Federal Constitutional Court cannot vouch for the capacity of mobile telephone and data networks. 

Additional Rules Concerning the Courtroom 

It is not permissible to make phone calls, tweet or send other messages, retrieve digital data, or use the internet in any way within or from the courtroom. All electronic devices which can be used for these purposes, in particular mobile phones, laptop computers and tablet computers, may not be used in the courtroom. Media representatives may obtain permission to use computers in offline mode in the press gallery if it is ensured that the devices are not used for audio or image recording or for data transmission. 

Taking Photographs and Filming; Pooling 

1. The pronouncements of judgments may be fully transmitted by audiovisual means. 

2. Media pools will be set up for taking photographs and filming in the courtroom. Two television teams (a public and a private television station with a maximum of three cameras each) and six photographers (four agency photographers and two freelance photographers) will be admitted to the courtroom. The pool representatives undertake to supply, upon request, their photographs and films to other radio and television stations, as well as to photographic agencies. 

Willingness to be a pool representative must be explicitly stated with the accreditation request. Pool representatives are appointed according to the order in which the accreditation requests are received. This will be determined by the order shown on the notice of receipt in the log report of the fax server of the telefax number +49 721 9101-550. If requests are received simultaneously, the function of pool representative is allocated by drawing lots. 

The television stations, agencies, and photographers so chosen are free in determining the members of their teams. 

3. When taking photographs and filming in the courtroom, photographers, camera operators, and other media representatives must ensure that the Senate has an unobstructed field of vision in all directions. Taking photographs, filming, and audio recording from behind the Justices’ bench is not permissible. Instructions to this end by the court staff must be complied with. Taking photographs and filming is only permitted with silent devices and without a flash. 

4. After the end of the pronouncement of the judgment, a period of 20 minutes is allocated for interviewing, filming, or photographing the parties to the proceedings or other individuals in the courtroom itself. After this time, only the reception room on the first floor and the entrance hall on the ground floor are available for this purpose 

Vehicles of Radio and Television Teams; Technicians 

There are only a limited number of parking spaces available for SNG vehicles, editing vehicles, and OB vans. If accredited journalists require parking space, they must indicate so along with the accreditation request on the form provided. The parking spaces are allocated in the order in which the requests are received. The following information is required for the allocation of parking space: number plate, vehicle type, make, dimensions (L x W x H in metres), weight and, if applicable, request for the Federal Constitutional Court to provide electrical hook-up.

The names, dates of birth, and ID card numbers of the accompanying technicians, and the vehicle data may be submitted after the request for parking space. The form provided under 


(in English) must be used for this. This also applies to media represented by members of the Justizpressekonferenz. The form must be sent by email to the address presse@bundesverfassungsgericht.de, or by telefax to +49 721 9101-461, by Monday, 16 January 2017, 12:00 am, at the latest. 

Media representatives with allocated parking space may set up the equipment on the day before the pronouncement of the judgment from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm, and on the day of the pronouncement of the judgment between 7:00 am and 9:00 am. 

Setting up of Studios 

The Press Office must be consulted in advance should media representatives wish to set up a studio. Studios may be set up in the reception room on the first floor and in the entrance hall on the ground floor. 

This information is based on § 17a of the Federal Constitutional Court Act in conjunction with the supplementary provisions laid down by the First and the Second Senate of the Federal Constitutional Court.