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Hundreds of far-right AfD protestors met by 3,300 anti-AfD ones

In World
June 08, 2024

Several hundred people demonstrating on Friday against Islamism at a rally organized by the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party in Mannheim were met with several thousand counterdemonstrators calling for Nazis to get out of the country.

The demonstrations followed a fatal attack on a policeman by an Afghan immigrant on May 31.

Police said there were around 700 at the AfD event who were met by around 3,300 counterdemonstrators opposed to the AfD rally. Chants of “AfD, AfD” on the one hand and “Nazis out” on the other could be heard. A large police contingent separated the demonstrators.

Several speakers at the AfD rally called for “knife violence” to “not become the norm” in Germany. Political Islam is “the greatest threat” to Germany’s security, others said.

In addition to German flags, banners with inscriptions such as “Remigration now” and “Close the borders” could also be seen at the rally.

The demonstration began with a minute’s silence for police officer Rouven Laur, who died on Sunday from injuries sustained in the knife attack.

The AfD originally wanted to demonstrate on the market square, but the Baden-Württemberg Administrative Court (VGH) upheld an appeal by the city of Mannheim against a decision by the Karlsruhe Administrative Court. That lower court had given the go-ahead for an AfD rally at the crime scene. As a result, the party had to move to a different location.

On May 31, a 25-year-old Afghan injured five participants at a rally organized by the Pax Europa movement, which is critical of Islam. Laur, the 29-year-old police officer, was critically injured and later died of his injuries.

A woman holds a poster with the slogan "Close the borders!" during a demonstration on the parade ground against Islamism organized by the Alternative for Germany (AfD). A week earlier, a police officer had been killed in a knife attack on Mannheim's market square. -/dpa

A woman holds a poster with the slogan “Close the borders!” during a demonstration on the parade ground against Islamism organized by the Alternative for Germany (AfD). A week earlier, a police officer had been killed in a knife attack on Mannheim’s market square. -/dpa

A woman holds a poster reading "Islam is the nail in the coffin of all democracy" during a demonstration on the parade ground against Islamism organized by the Alternative for Germany (AfD). A week earlier, a police officer had been killed in a knife attack on Mannheim's market square. -/dpa

A woman holds a poster reading “Islam is the nail in the coffin of all democracy” during a demonstration on the parade ground against Islamism organized by the Alternative for Germany (AfD). A week earlier, a police officer had been killed in a knife attack on Mannheim’s market square. -/dpa

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