Keep off the grass
The week's news at a glance.
The Berlin city council has outlawed soccer playing on a field in front of the Reichstag building, outraging most of the city as well as the federal parliament. Pickup soccer games have been a fixture on the lawn since the end of World War II, and now that the Bundestag has moved back into the Reichstag, lawmakers are often seen kicking a ball around. The city council, though, declared the games verboten because they muss up the grass. I cant understand why they are trying to prevent hobby soccer players from using such a beautiful setting, said Klaus Riegert, a Bundestag member and frequent player who is fighting the ban. Its madness. Players have appealed to Chancellor Gerhard Schröder, a soccer devotee whose office overlooks the field, to overrule the council.