Next April 18th in Germany the process will begin against Björn Höcke, the leader of the far-right German party Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) in the Thuringia region, accused of using a Nazi slogan during a 2021 rally. According to the prosecution, Höcke ended his speech with the phrase « Everything for Germany”, aware of the fact that it was a motto used by the Nazi assault units (storm Division, SA). It would also display a symbol often used by various terrorist organizations.
In Germany, the use of slogans, symbols or other propaganda tools linked to unconstitutional organizations, such as terrorist groups or the Nazi Party, it is forbidden in all contexts except those of a purely historical or didactic nature. According to Höcke’s lawyers, his behavior does not constitute a crime.
Thuringia is a region in central-eastern Germany. The local branch of the AfD is considered particularly radical, and in 2021 it was classified as a right-wing extremist group. At the same time, until recently Thuringia was one of the regions where the AfD was strongest electorally: last June Robert Sesselmann became the first AfD representative to win a local election, in a district of Thuringia. At the end of January, however, the party was defeated in the run-off elections in another district. Höcke is running for the AfD in the next state elections in Thuringia, which will take place on 1 September.
In recent weeks the AfD has been involved in a major political case, which began after the revelation by the investigative journalism site Correctiv of a meeting between some important people in the party leadership to discuss a plan for large-scale expulsions of asylum seekers, migrant people with residence permits and also German citizens of foreign origin.
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