Right-wing extremism gaining ground in Germany: survey

  • World
  • Friday, 22 Sep 2023

BERLIN, Sept. 21 (Xinhua) -- Far-right views appear to have penetrated deeper into German society, with 8 percent of the public now sharing a right-wing extremist worldview, according to a survey published by the Friedrich Ebert Foundation (FES) on Thursday.

The share of respondents with a "clearly right-wing extremist orientation" increased significantly from around 2 to 3 percent in previous years, according to the survey conducted every two years in cooperation with Bielefeld University.

"Parts of the ... society are distancing themselves from democracy or have lost confidence in functioning institutions," FES Chairman Martin Schulz said. "Populism and anti-democratic and ethno-nationalist positions are on the rise."

The results are "not only frightening, but also demand consistent action -- from politicians, but also from society itself," he said.

According to the latest Annual Report on the Protection of the Constitution published by the German Federal Ministry of the Interior, the number of extremist crimes in Germany reached an all-time high in 2022. More than 35,400 crimes with an extremist motivation were reported last year.

Earlier this week, Germany banned the internationally active right-wing extremist group Hammerskins, an offshoot of the U.S. Hammerskin Nation. It is the 20th right-wing extremist group deemed illegal by the country's government.

"With this ban, we are putting an end to the inhuman activities of an internationally active neo-Nazi group in Germany," Interior Minister Nancy Faeser said in a statement, calling the measure a "hard blow against organized right-wing extremism."

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