Thousands protest far-right party in Germany

Mass protests took place across 114 cities in Germany on Jan. 21 against the far-right political party Alternative für Deutschland (AfD). The demonstrations came in response to revelations that party leaders held a national meeting of extremist to discuss mass deportations, including of "non-assimilated citizens." According to activist group Together Against the Right, the weekend demonstrations brought out over 1.5 million attendees across the country, under slogans such as "DEFEND DEMOCRACY," "IT FEELS LIKE 1933," and "NEVER AGAIN IS NOW."

The "secret" meeting in Berlin on Nov. 25 was revealed in an exposé published by investigative journalism group Correctiv. It brougt together far-right figures from across both Germany and Austria, including some identified as "neo-Nazi," and was apparently backed by prominent German businessmen.

The scandal comes amid growing pressure to ban the AfD as a "danger to democracy." Local media reported that demonstrators echoed these calls at the protests.

The AfD first entered Germany's parliament in 2017, placing third in that year's election. In 2014, the party won its first seats in the European Parliament, garnering around seven percent of the vote.

Germany's Constitutional Court ruled Jan. 23 that another extremist political party, Die Heimat, or The Homeland, will be excluded from state funding. Die Heimat was previously known as Nationaldemokratische Partei Deutschlands (NPD), which faced numerous attempts to have it banned as a neo-Nazi formation. The party rebranded as Die Heimat in 2023, seemingly to evade such efforts. The Constitutional Court ruling excludes Die Heimat from state funding, essentially eradicating the party's financial base.

From Jurist, Jan. 23; Jurist, Jan. 21. Used with permission.

See our last report on the  AfD.