“We can smell your fear,” says leader of far right AfP in Germany to German Voters protesting

A secet meeting of right wing extremists is raising alarm in Germany. Present was Martin Sellner, among others, a leader of Austria’s Identitarian Movement, which subscribes to the “great replacement” conspiracy theory that claims there is a plot by non-white migrants to replace Europe’s “native” white population. 

According to VOA, Demonstrations against Germany’s far right party, Alternative for Germany or AfD, were called in some 100 locations across Germany from Friday through the weekend, including in Munich, Berlin and cities in the east of the country where the AfD has its strongholds.”

Interior Minister Nancy Faeser went so far as to say in the newspapers of the Funke press group that the far-right meeting was reminiscent of “the horrible Wannsee conference”, where the Nazis planned the extermination of European Jews in 1942. 

Thousands of protesters turned out in Hamburg on Friday as Germans become increasingly alarmed by the far-right revelations. At least 50,000 people turned out in the centre of Hamburg on Friday to hear centre-left Mayor Peter Tschentscher deliver a message to the AfD: “We are united and determined not to let our country and democracy be destroyed for the second time since 1945.”

Austrian far-right activist Martin Sellner, who has previously been barred from the UK, is alleged to have developed the mass deportation “masterplan”. It reportedly included details of moving people to a “model state” in North Africa that could provide space for up to two million people.

Sellner has promoted the idea of “remigration” before, mainly for migrants he considers a “burden”, but in comments posted on YouTube he said it was mentioned only in passing at Potsdam and then it was “turned into a masterplan for deportation by the lying press”. Reacting to the reports, 25 Social Democratic Bundestag members called for a ban on the AfD to be examined, particularly for the party’s “extremist” state associations.

Participants gather during a demonstration against racism and far right politics in front of the Reichstag building in Berlin, Jan. 21, 2024.

The wave of mobilization against the far-right party was sparked by a January 10 report by investigative outlet Correctiv, which revealed that AfD members had discussed the expulsion of immigrants and “non-assimilated citizens” at a meeting with extremists. News of the gathering sent shockwaves across Germany at a time when the AfD is soaring in opinion polls, just months ahead of three major regional elections in eastern Germany where their support is strongest. (BBC)

The BBC reports the AfD, which continues to poll second nationally, says it’s being scandalously smeared by opponents. “Panic is spreading. We can smell your fear,” AfD MP Bernd Baumann declared this week, addressing politicians from the ruling coalition parties.

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