Within hours, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s spokesman said the German leader was talking to Seehofer about the matter. In a statement Thursday, Seehofer renewed complaints about rising violence against police and rescue officers, and said that the language used in the column “sweepingly denies a whole group of people their human dignity.”
He said that, “after careful consideration,” he had decided to invite Tageszeitung's editors to discuss the article and its effects, and would ask the German Press Council — the media industry's own standards watchdog — to make a clear statement on the article, which he argued violates Germany's press code of conduct.
He didn't repeat the threat to file a criminal complaint, noting that others already have done so. The newspaper's deputy editor, Katrin Gottschalk, welcomed Seehofer's about-turn and wrote on Twitter that its legal team continues to stand by the columnist.