After the terror in halle: afd argues with its critics

After the terror in halle: afd argues with its critics

After the right-wing extremist terrorist attack in halle, germany, the afd is refusing to apportion blame.

"It is deeply shameful that such political instrumentalization is now beginning in connection with this terrible act in halle," afd federal chairman jorg meuthen told the deutsche presse agency on saturday at the hessian afd state party conference in neuhof. Bjorn hocke of the right-wing nationalist "flugel", on the other hand, did not address the accusations in an election campaign speech in erfurt.

Politicians from other parties again attacked the afd fiercely. "I don’t believe the concern that is being feigned in some places," said bavaria’s minister president markus soder (CSU) at the young union’s german state convention in saarbrucken. "The afd is not on the way to becoming a better and more honest CDU. The afd is on its way to being the true NPD in germany."The afd is "everything, but it is not bourgeois", said soder. "The afd does not want to go back to the 80s and 90s – some of its functionaries want to go back to the 30s."The federal constitutional court ruled in 2017 that the npd is unconstitutional.

SPD secretary general lars klingbeil demanded that the afd be monitored by the constitutional protection agency. "This is an anti-constitutional party," he said at the party convention of the baden-wurttemberg SPD in heidenheim. "The arsonists who are partly responsible are also sitting in the parliaments today. The afd is the party that makes sure we have this kind of social climate."The perpetrator in halle was not a single perpetrator. "This may have been someone who fired. But that were quite a few who ammunitioned him."

On wednesday, a heavily armed german tried to break into the synagogue in halle, where around 50 people were celebrating the most important jewish holiday, yom kippur. When the plan failed, the perpetrator shot a 40-year-old female passerby and a 20-year-old man in a doner snack bar. On his escape, he seriously injured a married couple with gunshots. The 27-year-old confessed to the crime and admitted to anti-semitic and right-wing extremist motives. He is in custody.

Meuthen defended himself against the accusations: "there is not the slightest connection between our party and this act; just as little as there is between other parties and this act," the afd chairman told dpa. "There was a sick maniac who committed random acts of murder. And he had committed many more murders if he had been able to enter the synagogue. And now a connection is being made to my party and even, we had to be put under surveillance by the constitutional protection agency. That is very cheap and morally shameful." During his speech to the delegates, which was repeatedly interrupted by prolonged applause, meuthen said that there had been a fundamental failure on the part of the state in protecting the synagogue in halle.

Thuringia’s state and parliamentary group leader hocke had reacted to accusations against his party on facebook on friday. "Instead of damonizing absolutely non-violent opposition politicians, we should for once talk about the general neglect, dullness and disorientation of our youth today, which make such excesses possible," he wrote. Afd politicians had condemned the halle murders.

However, at an election campaign appearance in the crowded area of the thuringian state capital of erfurt on saturday, hocke did not address the accusations of right-wing extremism against representatives of his party, nor did he respond to calls for monitoring by the federal office for the protection of the constitution, nor did he address the terrorist attack in halle. In front of several hundred supporters and opponents, he spoke, among other things, about clan criminality, asylum policy, and an alleged "multiculturalization" that all parties except the afd were pursuing. His speech, which lasted about an hour, was accompanied by applause and shouts of "squat, squat" as well as boos, whistles and "lugenhocke" shouts. In thuringia on 27. October a new state parliament elected.

Also CSU-land group leader alexander dobrindt spoke out for an observation of the afd by the constitutional protection agency. "You have to look closely at afd party branches like the so-called flugel to see if they are still on the ground of the constitution," he told the "passauer neue presse" (saturday). Some representatives of the afd had long since crossed the mental borders into right-wing extremism.

In january, the federal office for the protection of the constitution (bfv) classified the youth organization of the afd (junge alternative) and the "flugel" as suspected cases of right-wing extremism. That also allows the use of intelligence means. The afd then spoke of a "political instrumentalization" of the office for the protection of the constitution.

Michael roth, one of the candidates for the SPD presidency, criticized in the "welt" newspaper: "the political arm of right-wing terrorism sits in the german bundestag and in the state parliaments. And that is the afd." That certainly does not apply to all members. "But the party must clarify its relationship with those who, through hatred and incitement, prepare the ground for such terrible acts. The federal office for the protection of the constitution must keep a closer eye on the store," roth also demanded. "This is not a protest party, this is at least a right-wing party."