City councilors in the German city of Dresden declared a “Nazi emergency” because of the growing influence of “right-wing” extremism.
“The word ‘Nazinotstand’ is an exaggerated formulation for the fact that there is a serious problem — similar to the climate emergency — with right-wing extremism right up to the middle of society,” Max Aschenbach, councilor in the city, told CNN on Sunday. “For years, politicians have failed to position themselves clearly and unequivocally against the right-wing extremists, and to outlaw them.”
Aschenbach said the declaration carried no legal authority but was meant for symbolic purposes.
The center-right Christian Democrat Union party voted against the resolution, and a representative for the party said the resolution was meant to cause “provocation.”
“The choice of words in the title of the application does not do justice to the realities in our city: the vast majority of Dresdeners are neither right-wing extremists nor anti-democratic,” Jan Donhauser, a chairman for the party on the council, said.
The resolution comes as right-wing parties gain momentum in Germany with the Alternative for Deutschland party becoming the first right-wing party to be a part of the German parliament in the last 50 years.
Dresden is a stronghold in the country for the AfD, and they have a history of neo-Nazi groups holding rallies there.
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