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AfD election poster; Alice Weidel, AfD candidate
Berlin

AfD success sends tremors through political establishment

In a dramatic development, the AfD's rise on the national stage in Germany, has sent tremors through the political establishment. The AfD said it would challenge Merkel's decision to open German borders without Bundestag approval.

Published: September 25, 2017, 11:58 am

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    The Central Council of Jews issued a warning on Sunday against the anti-immigration party and said Germany was facing “its biggest challenge since 1949”.

    On Friday, AfD parliamentary candidate Waldemar Birkle told Sputnik News that once elected to the Bundestag, the AfD would launch a parliamentary commission to investigate Merkel’s decision to open borders in 2015, without seeking approval from the Bundestag.

    Now a newly elected AFD politician has vowed to send Merkel to jail for her handling of the migrant crisis. Stephan Brandner, the newly elected Member of the Bundestag for Erfurt, told reporters the party will press ahead with an inquiry into Merkel’s handling of the migrant crisis.

    “This vote is a vote of anger against the migration policy of Angela Merkel, against her decision to open the doors to more than one million migrants 2 years ago.

    “We will take care of it, we will have it condemned and send this old wreck to jail!” he said.

    Antifa demonstrators gathered outside the AfD election party, and police were forced to intervene. The protest on Sunday evening took place in front of a high-rise building at Alexanderplatz, where the AfD celebrated its entry into the Bundestag on one of the lower floors.

    AfD opponents protested outside the Hochhaus, where the party was busy celebrating its huge success in the Bundestag elections. The police were deployed “to protect the building” German daily Die Welt reported.

    The protesters called for the party to go away and jeered them as the “AfD racist pack”. At Alexanderplatz in Berlin, some 200 hundred Antifa members were held back by a large police presence on the spot.

    One banner read “racism is no alternative”. Some AfD politicians and supporters photographed and filmed the demonstrators from the balcony.

    In Frankfurt am Main, around a hundred people were also demonstrating against the entry of the AfD in the Bundestag and the election result. There were no incidents recorded a police officer said. Leftist groups had called for the demonstration.

    Antifa demonstrators in Cologne lit flares as they took to the streets to protest against the AfD, according to Germany’s tabloid Bild.

    German elections was a disaster for the German establishment, following the worst showing for the CDU/CSU since 1949 and the worst result for the SPD since 1945, with support for both parties crashing since the 2013 elections.

    There had been speculation that the AfD could do even better than polls suggested, because of Germans keeping their support for the party secret. One survey commissioned by the tabloid newspaper Blid suggested that 40 per cent of Germans believe the party would do better than expected.

    Finally, in yet another shock for Germany’s establishment, according to Europe Elects, the AfD received the second most votes after Merkel’s coalition in the former East Germany. It enters the parliament with 94 mandates.

    Beatrix van Storch, one of the AfD’s leaders, told the BBC that Sunday’s election result was “a huge success and it will change the political system in Germany, and it will give back a voice to the opposition”.

    Van Storch says her party will “give the people who have not been represented in the last parliament a voice again”. She added: “We will start debates on migration, we will start debates on Islam, we will start debates on ever closer union.”

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