Germany’s current interior minister, Nancy Faeser, likes to repeatedly claim that right-wing extremism is the biggest threat facing Germany, yet not only does her own ministry’s data contradict her claims, but even the simple act of organizing a party conference in Germany’s liberal democracy is apparently not possible, at least for the conservative Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, due to the threat of left-wing violence.
The AfD has been the biggest victim of political violence in the country, according to data, and the party’s events and conferences have long faced serious threats. Now, Carl Benz Arena in Stuttgart has terminated the contract for the AfD Baden-Württemberg state party conference on July 2 and 3, with a representative for the arena, Sascha Penna, arguing that the event would require a mile-wide police security zone, several hundred officers, and water cannons to ensure security.
If she succeeds and AfD can move forward with the party congress, police are expecting that the left-wing scene from the Bad Cannstatt district of Stuttgart will work to disrupt the event.
“We cannot be held responsible for personal injury and damage to property,” said Penna.
In addition, concerts by Die Fantastischen Vier with up to 100,000 visitors take place in the Neckarpark over the first July weekend.
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Recent data from Germany’s interior ministry outlines how there are more violent incidents from the German radical left than the radical right, but that has not stopped Faeser from focusing nearly all her energy on the right, including a “10-point plan” to defeat right-wing extremism in the country. News that Faeser previously wrote for Antifa magazine shortly before taking office, despite the magazine being funded by an organization listed as a threat to state security, has raised accusations of bias against her.
The AfD has pointed out that despite Germany labeling itself a democracy, the party cannot even organize politically due to the threat of left-wing violence.
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“The termination is unjustified. A security threat does not emanate from the AfD but mostly from violent left-wing extremists,” party spokesman Markus Frohnmaier told the DPA. “When a legal and democratic party like AfD can no longer hold party conferences due to such a threat, we have reached a situation that predates democracy. We will never accept that and will, therefore, sue the (contract’s) cancellation in court.”
It’s not the first time AfD has lost access to event spaces that have already been promised, with the reasoning behind cancellations always being the massive threat from the radical left against the operators of the premises. AfD politicians have also been targeted with a number of arson attacks and members have routinely been assaulted, underlining the serious threat the party faces.
The party had expected 800 to 1,000 guests for the state party conference on July 2 and 3. The delegates are to elect a new state executive after parliamentary group leader Alice Weidel announced her withdrawal from the body.