Germany court allows far-right party public facility use for federal party conference News
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Germany court allows far-right party public facility use for federal party conference

A German administrative court held on Friday that the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party is allowed to use the public facility of Grugahalle for the AfD’s federal party conference on June 29 and 30.

In allowing the AfD access to the Grugahalle, the court held that the AfD is entitled to use public facilities, such as the Grugahalle, as political parties should be treated equally. The court said that political parties should only be denied access to public facilities if there is a possibility that criminal offenses would be committed while facilities are used. A strict risk assessment should be conducted in determining whether there is a risk that criminal offenses would be committed as denying political parties access to public facilities breaches the constitutional right to equal opportunities.

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. They are now the second most popular party in Germany after the Christian Democrats. On May 13, 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 that AfD and its youth organization Young Alternative for Germany as extremism efforts. 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.” The German Federal Youth Association previously stated that the AfD’s positions are contrary to democracy and that the AfD should be banned to confront fascism in Germany.