Are you planning to come to Germany for a short period to visit relatives, attend a meeting or seminar, or simply for holidays? If yes, you can apply for a Schengen Tourist Visa. A Schengen Visa entitles the holder to an accumulated stay of up to 90 days within a period of 6 months for 26 European Countries.
You are advised to submit your application for a Schengen Visa to the representative of the country which is your main destination – considering length and purpose of your intended stay. In this case it is Germany.

Required Documents
Application form
• One completed visa application form (which you can download from the website of Germany Embassy in your home country)

Passport
• Passport valid for at least 90 days after expiry of requested visa
• 2 copies of pages containing personal information
• Copies of pages with recent Schengen visa(s)
• One recent biometric passport picture

Document confirming employment
• Employees: Letter of employment
• Self-employed: Company registration/letter from accountant
• Students: Proof of school/university attendance, confirming that student is exempt from attending lectures during requested travel period

Documents reflecting the nature of the trip
• Signed letter of invitation from private person + passport copy, or
• Legalised letter of invitation or concert/sport event tickets, or
• Package Tour/Cruises/Individual Trips (proof of accommodation for every day) or

Documents confirming sufficient funds are available for the trip
• Current 3 months stamped bank statement of private bank account, or
• Current 3 months stamped bank statement of business account, or
• Legalized letter of obligation + written statement explaining the relationship between the inviting party and the applicant

Flight-ticket and hotel reservation
• Flight reservation and travel itinerary
• Hotel reservation with full address for the entire time of stay in Schengen State(s)
• Signed Invitation letter from a host/company in Germany with full address

Medical insurance
• Medical insurance valid for the duration of the requested Visa
• Minimum coverage of EUR 30,000 and repatriation

For accompanying minors (younger than 18 years of age)
• Unabridged birth certificate (displaying father’s and mother’s name )
• Guardian’s declaration of consent signed by both guardians/parents
• Copy of first page of the minor’s passport

Visa Fees
The fee for a Schengen Visa is 60.00 Euro.

Where and how to apply?
After completing the application form, you have to take it to the German Embassy in your home country.

You are advised to apply for a visa at least 3 weeks before your travel date to meet any processing delays.

Important for information for applicants
• Only complete applications can be accepted; Non-submission of necessary documentation may lead to a refusal

• False or falsified documents will lead to refusal of visa and/or further consequences

• The German missions reserve the right to ask for further supporting documents/information

• Visa extensions within Germany are generally not possible

• Applicants may not apply for permanent residence in Germany while on this Visa

• The German Mission may shorten the validity of the Visa without prior consultation

• Have you already had your fingerprints taken at an earlier application for a C-Schengen visa? If so, it may not be necessary for you to apply in person. The above article has been prepared using information provided by the German Embassy, Pretoria, South Africa

Source: http://www.afronews.de/

The violent death of a 23-year-old woman in 2014 shook millions across Germany. Now the young man convicted for the assault could soon be deported to Serbia.
An administrative court in Wiesbaden on Wednesday agreed with immigration authorities that the convicted assailant Sanel M. should be deported from Germany. The 20-year-old can still appeal the decision within two weeks.

Sanel M. was convicted and sentenced to three years in prison in 2015 for gross bodily harm with fatal consequences after he hit a woman in the head, ultimately leading to her death.

In November 2014, Tugce Albayrak had confronted the young man in a carpark in Offenbach for harassing two young girls inside a McDonald’s. Sanel M. struck her across the head, causing her to hit the ground and fall into a coma. The scene was captured on surveillance video and broadcast on national media, bringing greater attention to the attack.

Days later her family switched off her life-support system on her 23rd birthday, sparking a wave of sympathy in Germany amid widespread revulsion over the assault.

About 1,000 mourners attended Albayrak's funeral and a mass online petition called for her to be posthumously awarded the Bundesverdienstkreuz (Federal Order of Merit) for her bravery. Chancellor Angela Merkel called Albayrak a “role model” and President Joachim Gauck said she shows “bravery and civil courage in an exemplary way”.

The Wiesbaden immigration office ordered Sanel M, in September 2016 to be expelled from Germany for eight years and called for his immediate deportation. He then brought a complaint to the administrative court.

The court agreed that Sanel M. presented a public security threat if he stayed in the country, in part based on his original conviction and a psychological assessment conducted in prison. Not only had Sanel M. violated prison rules multiple times, but his actions there had also prompted disciplinary and criminal procedures.

Though he had shown more positive change over time, he was still considered to be a long-term risk. And while Sanel M.'s family lives in Germany, the court said that he could still be able to form new bonds in Serbia, though it would at first be difficult.

Source: https://www.thelocal.de/

Flowking Stone, the "Go Low" hitmaker, will be performing tonight at Empire Lounge located at Hamburger str. 209  Hamburg, Germany 22083.  Upon arriving Hamburg, Germany, the Ghanaian star came  straight to the studios of  Radio Topafric to explain to his fans why he almost missed his Hamburg concert.

In the video interview, he explained what happened and how he rectified the situation and eventually made it to Hamburg, Germany.  Watch the video below and listen to his explanation.   
He urges his fans to show up in their numbers tonite because he will be rocking the stage at the Empire club. 

Doors open at 11pm

Hamburg recently opened a spectacular concert house to the strains of Beethoven and Wagner that has been touted as a new global attraction, albeit after a cost explosion. Chancellor Angela Merkel and President Joachim Gauck joined 2,100 guests at the inaugural concert under tight security in the grand hall of the Elbphilharmonie, which has electrified critics with its audacious design and world-class acoustics.
The white interior and unique design seemed to enchant even the most high profile guests. The three-hour-long programme met with a long standing ovation.

Billed as a cultural monument ready to rival the Sydney Opera House, the building came in more than six years overdue and at ten times the initial budget, with a cost to the venerable northern port city of €789 million ($829 million).Gauck said he was "awed" by the "incredibly beautiful" architecture and its "wonderful sound" but acknowledged its turbulent beginnings.

"The Elbphilharmonie has been called a dream and a nightmare, a global star and a joke, an embarrassment and a wonder," he said.
But the enormous project's success would come from "the magic of its contrasts", he said. "The Elbphilharmonie can become what many people in Hamburg hope for: the symbol of a cosmopolitan metropolis that is open to the world, and a jewel in the crown of Germany as a nation of culture."

Merkel, a passionate classical music fan, later told NDR public television the opening had been historic as the dawn of a national landmark.
"One day we will all be very proud that something was built in our lifetime that people will still refer to in 50 or 100 years, saying 'look, that was what happened on January 11th 2017'." 'Difficult birth' Jutting out from the city at the end of a pier on the Elbe River, the Elbphilharmonie has a boxy brick former cocoa warehouse as its base, with a breathtaking glass structure recalling frozen waves perched on top.
Sandwiched between the two levels, a public plaza protected by giant curved glass windows offers stunning views of the harbour, the spires of the charming old trade centre and Hamburg's temperamental skies.

Earlier Mayor Olaf Scholz defended the project, saying that its sold-out concerts through July and the more than 500,000 visitors who have already flocked to the building proved the Elbphilharmonie was winning hearts. "It was a difficult birth but they have adopted the child," Scholz, who inherited the scandal-plagued boondoggle from his predecessor, said of the 1.7 million residents of Germany's second city who have footed the bill.

Officials say the Elbphilharmonie is the kind of sparkling jewel, like Frank Gehry's Guggenheim museum in Bilbao, Spain, with the power to boost a city's international profile overnight. This month, the New York Times cited Hamburg among its top ten tourist destinations for 2017 thanks in large part to the opening of the Elbphilharmonie. Scholz insisted that the Elphie, as the two-hall concert house has been nicknamed, would be a building for the people, with diverse events appealing to visitors beyond the well-heeled classical music set."It is my aim that every pupil in a Hamburg school will see a concert here," he said.

Brahms' birthplace, Beatles' cradle Scholz said the building would embrace the long musical tradition of Hamburg, the birthplace of Brahms and Mendelssohn and the cradle of the Beatles' early stardom, and soon host concerts by the world's top orchestras.
Musical director Christoph Lieben-Seutter promised eclectic programming, including a series of concerts featuring Syrian music in the spring honouring the thousands of asylum seekers who have arrived in the city.

The Elbphilharmonie's completion marks a rare urban development success story in Germany, which has been plagued by planning disasters such as Berlin's international airport, now five years behind schedule and counting. To claw back some of the investment, Swiss architects Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron, who also designed Beijing's "bird's nest" Olympic stadium and the Tate Modern gallery in London, added posh apartments, restaurants and a luxury hotel complete with an in-house meditation consultant.
The evening was designed as a showcase of Germany's soft power through high culture, and spotlighted the acoustic potential of the hall's "vineyard" layout with seats stretching up in steep terraces from the stage.

The programme, kept secret until the opening, spanned 400 years of music history, including orchestral works by Beethoven, Wagner, Brahms and Mendelssohn and contemporary German composer Wolfgang Rihm. For those not lucky enough to snag tickets for opening night, a light show on the Elbphilharmonie's glittering facade entertained crowds gathered outside in wintry weather.

Source: https://www.thelocal.de/

Germany's famous port city has a wealth of impressive sights, districts and landmarks, here are eight that you won't want to miss while on a trip there.
1. Fischmarkt - fish market
While it might not be at the top of anyone's 'romantic weekend away in Hamburg' list, this 100-year old fish auction hall has its own charm, and is more authentic to the city than sights like Hamburg Dungeon.

Never mind wurst, grab a tasty Fischbrötchen (fish roll) while appreciating the fish market's impressive interior and the sweet salty smell of the fresh catch of the day being brought in. For fishophiles, fans of seafood and seagulls everywhere, you'll have to get down early, it's open every Sunday but only from 5am till 9.30am.

2. Poggenmühlenbrücke - Poggenmühlen bridge
Poggenmühlen bridge is located in Hamburg's Speicherstadt, or city of warehouses, and offers the best view of these warehouses on the waterfront. It gives you a chance to delve a little deeper into the labyrinthine workings of the world's largest contiguous warehouse complex, away from the crowds of tourists.

Originally built between 1885 and 1927 - and partially rebuilt after the Second World War - this warehouse district sits on what were originally a group of narrow islands in the Elbe. They are part of the city's rich maritime history, as Hamburg is historically one of Europe's most important ports. These UNESCO World Heritage warehouses were given historic monument protection in 1991.

3. Old Elbe Tunnel
The Old Elbe Tunnel is another of Hamburg's century old attractions and has been a protected monument since 2003.

You can choose to walk, or take the lift, down 24 meters to the tunnel entrance. When you walk the 426.5 meters of tiled tunnel, see if you can spot the strange depiction of four rats and a boot among the more predictable murals of marine life that adorn the walls.

When it first opened in 1911, this was the first river tunnel on the continent, created to improve transport links between the northern and southern sides of the Elbe as the city's port expanded.

4. Steinwerder Aussichtspunkt - Steinwerder lookout point
If you're a fan of innovative architecture, the best place to admire the newest addition to the Hamburg skyline - the Elbphilarmonie or Elbe Philarmonic Hall - is at the lookout point on Steinwerder.

In order to get there, you'll have to go through the Old Elbe Tunnel.

Hamburg's answer to the Sydney Opera House is named after the river Elbe, which runs through the city on its way to the North Sea.

The Concert Hall was due to open back in 2010, but due to delays eager classical music enthusiasts had to wait until this November for a public preview, while inaugural concerts will be held in January 2017.

It's six years late and more than ten times over the original price estimate of €77 million - but better late than never. So if you're in Hamburg and a budding Brahms and Mendelssohn aficionado – both of whom were born in the city – then add a concert experience to your trip.

5. Miniatur Wunderland - miniature wonderland
This is another Hamburg sight that can claim to be the biggest in the world, and ironically it's to do with things in miniature. Did someone say the world's largest model railway? That's right. This one is for the child inside you or the strange man child beside you.

Located inside the Speicherstadt, this miniature wonderland took 230 employees 580,000 hours to painstakingly construct. There are 930 trains, 228,000 trees, 215,000 figures, 8,850 cars, 13,000 meters of track and 3,660 buildings depicting both the city it is housed in, alongside the USA, Scandinavia and more.

But it's not all child friendly, some twisted employees have hidden miniature dirty jokes here and there. See if you can spot several small pairs of lovers dotted around this seemingly utopian wonderland. The clues are: flower fields, behind a tree, an office and in a barn. Just don't tell the kids about your smutty Where's Waldo? adventure.

6. The Indra Club
The Beatles played at clubs along Hamburg's notorious Reeperbahn strip in the early 1960s prior to their worldwide fame, including a first residency at The Indra Club, which is still there today on Große Freiheit, a street that intersects the strip.
Once you're done looking at Beatles memorabilia you can walk on over to the bright lights of the Reeperbahn, where Hamburg's red light district can be found.

The actor and singer Hans Albers, one of Hamburg's most famous sons, starred in a film 'On the Reeperbahn at half past midnight' about its vices as far back as the 1950s.

The 930m street in the St. Pauli district is still Hamburg's number one spot for entertainment and seedy old men. It's only got more glamorous with age.

While you're in the area, does your spinster aunt need a vibrator this Christmas? Then why not head down to the Santa Pauli Christmas market while you still can, where you have a host of sex-related products and unusual festive gifts to choose from.

7. Beim Grünen Jäger
St. Pauli isn't just about brothels and vibrators. Walk away from the Reeperbahn and you'll get to Beim Grünen Jäger, a street near Feldstrasse U-Bahn station. It's full of cafes, restaurants and bars, and a welcome respite from the glowing neon lights of strip clubs.

You don't even have to splash out for alcohol in a bar. Why not go into a nearby shop, buy a bottle of beer and relax on the street with your friends?

For football fans, the cult football club FC St. Pauli also play their home games nearby at the Millerntorstadion. The club are known for their skull and crossbones symbol and alternative, left-wing fan culture, which emerged in the 1980s as a reaction to hooliganism, fascism and right-wing nationalism in the game.

So if you're not a nationalist hooligan a stadium tour might be just the thing for you.

8. Alma-Wartenberg-Platz
Alma-Wartenberg-Platz is a hidden gem in the Altona district of Hamburg, where you can forget the sorrows of a hazy night on the Reeperbahn at one of the bars that line this attractive square.

Altona is a large area to the west of St. Pauli, which has gained a reputation for being one of Hamburg's coolest Kiezs (districts).

Hamburg's fish market is located in the south-east corner of Altona, so if you walk north towards Alma-Wartenberg-Platz from there you'll also get to see Altona's grandiose city hall on the way, along with its theatre, museum and the Platz der Republik. And because these are located on a hill, you'll also get the best view of Harbour Cranes in action across the Elbe.

Source: https://www.thelocal.de/

Presenting a biennial report on integration on Friday, the government's integration
commissioner painted a positive picture of improvements made in Germany in recent years.
“In terms of participation and integration we’re on the right path in Germany,” Aydan
Özoguz concluded in remarks on the report titled "Participation, equal opportunity and developing rights in immigrant country Germany."
“Children with immigrant backgrounds are much more likely to go to kindergarten, more
teenagers are getting higher school qualifications in comparison with five years ago, employment among immigrants is up,” she said.
The report details how in 2015, 17 percent of children from immigrant families completed an Abitur, the university prep exams taken at the end of high school. This was an increase from nine percent in 2010.
The percentage of children from immigrant families with a final school qualification also rose from 38 percent to 43 percent.
There are 17.2 million people who live in Germany with an immigration background, 21 percent of the total population and 1.8 million more than in 2014. Around half of them hold German citizenship, while most come from Poland, Russia or Turkey.
But the Social Democrat politician added that chances of success later in life were still
heavily dependent on whether a child has an immigrant background.
People with immigration backgrounds are still twice as likely to live in poverty as those with no immigration background, a fact which has remained unchanged for years, Özoguz noted.
“Also, even if the number of people with migration backgrounds in employment has risen from 7.54 million to 7.72 million, unemployment is now almost three times as high among immigrants as it is among German citizens.”
Özoguz also pointed with concern at a heated public debate surrounding the alleged
dangers that have arrived with the almost 900,000 refugees Germany took in during 2015.
Taking aim at the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, Özoguz said that the party had ridden on the back of refugees “to create opinions that don’t always correspond to the truth."
She emphasized that, while the fears of certain people in society shouldn’t be condemned outright as racism, there are people “who are trying to create the image that criminality will rise if more refugees come here.”
The reality is that there are significant differences between different refugee groups, she said, adding that "at the moment there is as good as no criminality among Syrian refugees.”

Source: https://www.thelocal.de/

The police in Brandenburg have been awarded with the Negative Prize, after various human rights violations among them their violent attempt to deport a pregnant Kenyan lady.

Wednesday, November 2nd. A Kenyan lady is walks into the Carl-Thiem Clinic in Cottbus accompanied by the police. The police had showed up unannounced at her door that morning and claiming they had been sent by the immigration office to accompany the lady to the clinic and find out if she was in a condition to travel in order for them to deport her to Kenya. All this was happening a day before her planned visit to the immigration office. Usually, the immigration office is required to inform you at least a month before the deportation date, which wasn’t the case here.

Ms. N. had already suffered two miscarriages and a stillbirth, her current pregnancy was also risky. She had been taken into psychological care to help her go through it. All this was known to the immigration office in Cottbus, but that did not stop them.

On getting to the hospital, Ms. N. got a panic attack and causing her severe abdominal pain. A nurse who had come to serve Ms. N completely ignored they cry for help and insisted that she could only do what the police officers had requested her to do, thus couldn’t go out of her way to look into Ms. N’s condition. Overwhelmed by the pain, Ms. N collapsed but even that couldn’t stop the police from taking her to the police station to prepare for the deportation.

Fortunately, a member of the FluMiCo (Flight and Migration in Cottbus), who was accompanying the lady to the clinic, was able to get a lawyer to stop the deportation with a warrant from the court.

Sadly, these kinds of deportation attempts are becoming quite a regular in Brandenburg. Another case involving the Immigration Office in Oranienburg, involved Ms. D who was handcuffed and her legs and hips tied with belts by five policemen in the middle of the night while still in her pyjamas. The lady that suffers from mental illness tried unsuccessfully to defend and free herself. She was taken to a holding cell at the Tegel Airport where she was bound in a body cuff and an inhalation mask was put on her face so she could not speak. When she refused to take medication a doctor was offering her, one of the heavy policemen sat on her causing internal bleeding in her abdomen. The police were finally able to get her onto the plane, but seeing her condition, the pilot refused to take her with him.

The deportation was put on hold but the lady has been in psychiatric care in a Brandenburg hospital since that night.

The police in Brandenburg have come under fire for these human rights violations with some of the organisations calling for the resignation of the police chief and the immigration office head.

Source: http://mkenyaujerumani.de/

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