German court upholds domestic intelligence agency’s classification of far-right party News
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German court upholds domestic intelligence agency’s classification of far-right party

A higher administrative court in Münster, Germany ruled on Monday that the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, which is Germany’s domestic intelligence agency, was justified in suspecting the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) and its youth organization Young Alternative for Germany (JA) as extremism efforts.

The court ruled that the office retains the right to keep the AfD under surveillance as there is sufficient evidence that the AfD may pursue goals against liberal democratic order contrary to the German constitution. Nonetheless, the chairman of the fifth Senate stated that suspected anti-constitutional efforts do not prove extremist efforts.

The court stated that it was reasonable to suspect that the AfD pursued efforts to degrade German citizens with migration backgrounds to a lower legal status and that there was sufficient evidence that the AfD had discriminatory objectives against migrants. The court found that the AfD substantially employed derogatory language toward Muslims and refugees.

Additionally, the court said that it was reasonable to suspect that the JA wished to deny German citizens with migration backgrounds as equal members of the community. The court stated that the political ideas of JA aimed to disregard the human dignity of Muslims.

In addition to stating that there was no evidence proving the office acted improperly when classifying the AfD as a suspected case, the court also noted that the office has the right to inform the public of its classifications of cases under the Federal Constitutional Protection Act, as long as their classifications are clear.

In response to the court’s ruling, leading figures of the AfD Timo Chrupalla and Alice Weidel wrote on X (formerly Twitter) that the court’s ruling was passed following inadequate procedural management. They said that the AfD would oppose the decision.

The AfD first entered Germany’s parliament in 2017, placing third in that year’s election. The AfD has risen in popularity in recent years. On May 4, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and European Union leaders condemned the attacks on politicians in Germany. While the Saxony Social Democrat branch blamed the AfD for the attacks, the AfD said that they were the victim of a hate campaign by the media and political establishment.

On January 20, mass protests occurred across 114 German cities against the AfD. The demonstrations were in response to the AfD’s rising popularity and allegations that its party members discussed mass deportations. There were previously proposals to ban the AfD as some German politicians considered the party as a “danger to democracy.”