The annual party congress for the Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) in the state of Baden-Württemberg—which was set to take place early next month—has been canceled due to threats of violence from left-wing extremists, leaving some questioning the state of democracy in Germany.
The operator of the Carl Benz Arena in Stuttgart, the location where the congress was set to be held on July 2nd and 3rd, terminated the contract earlier this week after authorities revealed that several hundred officers and water cannons would need to be deployed to maintain the required mile-wide security perimeter around the party congress, the regional public broadcaster Südwestrundfunk reports.
Authorities stated a large contingent of left-wing extremists had planned to physically shut down the party’s congress. “We cannot be held responsible for personal injury and damage to property,” said Sascha Penna, the operator of the Carl Benz Arena.
Now, Alice Weidel, the leader of the AfD’s parliamentary group who also chairs the party’s state association in Baden-Württemberg, says legal action will be taken to ensure the congress takes place.
The situation at hand, wherein a party—one which enjoys nearly 13% of the national vote—is unable to organize due to threats of violence from left-wing extremists, is indicative of the utterly decrepit state of democracy in Germany, according to the AfD.
“The termination is unjustified. A security threat does not emanate from the AfD but mostly from violent left-wing extremists,” party spokesman Markus Frohmaier 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 [contracts] cancellation in court.”
After establishing itself as a significant parliamentary force in 2017, the AfD has become the primary target of violent left-wing extremists. Over the past three years, members and politicians of the AfD were the victims of political violence more frequently than members of any other political party represented in the Bundestag, as The European Conservative has previously reported.
Robert Semonsen is a political journalist based in Central Europe. His work has been featured in various English-language news outlets in Europe and the Americas. He has an educational background in biological and medical science. His Twitter handle is @R_Semonsen.