Many Germans demonstrated on Saturday against the rise of the far right in the country, especially the Alternative for Germany party. According to the police, about 100,000 people took to the streets in Dusseldorf alone.
The demonstrators are concerned about the growth of supporters of the controversial Alternative for Germany party. Saturday's slogan was: “Against the AfD – we are not silent. We are not looking away. We are acting.”
The huge crowd was very diverse: young, old and entire families with children. In keeping with Düsseldorf tradition, the demonstrators were accompanied by punk music, among other things. The signs bore texts such as “I don't like Nazis in general” and “Never again.”
Mayor Stefan Keller (CDU) told his audience that around 1930 the risks to Germany's first democracy were also underestimated. People who warned about this were ridiculed. “This must not happen to us again. We shout to the extremists: You will never form a majority again.”
Protests in several German cities
In Osnabrück, where there were between 25,000 and 30,000 people, Defense Minister Boris Pistorius (SPD) spoke. He said that the AfD was looking forward to regime change. “In other words, it means they want to return to the dark times of racial delusion, discrimination, inequality and injustice.”
He compared Pistorius to the Weimar Republic, which fell not because of its enemies, but because of the weakness of its friends. “Today we know better, and history should not repeat itself.”
Actions were also taken in several other large and small German cities, including Aachen, Mannheim, Kaiserslautern, Lübeck, Marburg and Weimar. There were already actions on Friday in Frankfurt, Saarbrücken and Gutersloh, among other cities. Last weekend, the total attendance at similar demonstrations was estimated at about 900,000 people.
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