Thousands of people protested in Magdeburg on July 28-29 against the far-right Alternative for Germany during the party’s congress to choose candidates for next year’s European Parliament elections.
“Nazis away!” slogans
Protesters outside the meeting venue in the city of Magdeburg waved banners with slogans such as “Let’s stand together against right-wing hatred” or “Nazis away”, Reuters reported.
The AdG, in second position in German voters’ preferences (22%) and behind the opposition Conservatives, denies being a Nazi party.
The AdG won its first district leader election in June and is expected to win three future land votes in eastern Germany. The party’s growing support has raised domestic intelligence concerns about far-right extremism.
Anti-EU, anti-Ukraine, and pro-Russia party
Analysts attribute the party’s rising popularity to voters’ fears about recession, migration and the so-called “green transition” – climate carbon-neutral policies. Populists managed to turn these issues into their electoral benefits.
“Alternative for Germany” earlier said that during next year’s European Parliament elections, it will seek the “dissolution” of the EU or Germany’s withdrawal from the EU. The party also does not support sanctions against Russia and opposes aid for Ukraine.
The Kremlin – AfD connection
The Kremlin is keen to unite Germany’s two radical political parties and interfere in the country’s domestic politics to reduce support for Ukraine.
The combination of Germany’s far-right AfD and far-left Die Linke parties is a clear Kremlin goal, and officials in Moscow first proposed it in September, The Washington Post reported.
WP cites secret documents that note meetings between Kremlin officials and Russian political strategists, as well as Kremlin orders to focus on Germany to build anti-war sentiment in Europe and weaken support for Ukraine.
It is noted that AfD repeats the Kremlin’s view of the cause of Russia’s war in Ukraine, saying that Russia was protecting itself from NATO encirclement and protecting Russian-speaking residents of eastern Ukraine.
Far-right and far-left party in many European countries, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, often support Moscow narratives on the international stage. Russian propaganda media tend to rely on far-left and neo-Nazi politicians’ support in Europe to spread its views.
Germany has taken Ukraine’s side since the beginning of the Russian full-scale invasion and has been providing significant assistance to Kyiv both financially and militarily.