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Burning car of AfD chief Tino Chrupalla. Photo: Private

AfD leader injured in arson attack

AfD leader Tino Chrupalla was injured in an attack on his car on Monday night. Strangers set fire to the AfD chief's Volkswagen Caddy on his property in Görlitz, a town in eastern Germany on the Polish border.

Published: March 3, 2020, 6:16 am

    Görlitz

    In an attempt to extinguish the fire to stop it from spreading, Chrupalla inhaled toxic fumes and had to be treated in a clinic for several hours.

    “I see that as an attack on my family,” Chrupalla told Berlin weekly Junge Freiheit. When asked how he was doing after the crime, he replied: “Badly”. Because of an assumed political motivation for the crime, the police have taken over the investigation, as a police spokeswoman told the Lausitzer Rundschau.

    The Secretary General of the Saxony CDU, Alexander Dierks, condemned the attack. “Violence is never a means of political debate,” he wrote on Twitter. He said there was no excuse for such attacks.

    The AfD is the party whose representatives are most often victims of attacks. As can be seen from a response from the Federal Government to an inquiry from the AfD parliamentary group, the authorities across Germany registered 112 attacks on offices or facilities of the parties represented in the Bundestag between October and December last year.

    The AfD accounted for more than half of the 62 cases. Some 58 of them are left-motivated according to the criminal police service. The alarming figures had been similar in the previous quarter.

    The AfD also comes first in the number of attacks on representatives or members of political parties. According to the Federal Government’s response, 87 of the 202 attacks were on the AfD, with 78 crimes seen as politically motivated by the police, while the remaining nine could not be assigned.

    For the German Federal Government, however, this is no evidence that the attacks are “a systematic form of intimidation or threat” to the AfD.

    The AfD member of the Bundestag, Martin Hess, who initiated the request, sharply criticized this odd assessment. “It has now been shown once again that the AfD is the main victim of political violence – and by a clear margin. If left-wing competitors, including the government, play down these attacks, they will support left-wing extremism and promote the political division in this country that they usually complain about,” Hess said.

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