- Title: German anti-immigrant party campaigns ahead of election
- Date: 6th September 2017
- Summary: PFORZHEIM, GERMANY (SEPTEMBER 6, 2017) (REUTERS) ***WARNING CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** EXTERIOR OF VENUE AND PAN TO PROTESTERS PROTESTERS WHISTLING PLACARD, READING (German) 'NO NAZIS WANTED' PROTESTERS HOLDING PLACARD, READING (German) 'PFORZHEIM FREE OF NAZIS' PLACARD, READING (German) 'AGAINST RACISM, THEN AND TODAY' PROTESTERS WITH PLACARDS, WHISTLING VARIOUS OF INSIDE VENUE AFD SIGN AUDIENCE TOP CANDIDATE FOR GENERAL ELECTION, ALICE WEIDEL, ARRIVING ON STAGE AUDIENCE APPLAUDING OTHER TOP CANDIDATE FOR GENERAL ELECTION, ALEXANDER GAULAND, ARRIVING ON STAGE AUDIENCE WEIDEL WALKING TO LECTERN (SOUNDBITE) (German) TOP AFD CANDIDATE FOR GENERAL ELECTION, ALICE WEIDEL, SAYING (ABOUT TV DEBATE SHE WALKED OUT OF): "It was very interesting for those who could not see this (TV debate) foolhardiness - you did not miss much, to be honest. But the bottom line that we as voters can take from that debate is that all parties in the German party spectrum want to legalize the illegal immigration. And we say: Not with us, not with the AFD." GAULAND APPLAUDING (SOUNDBITE) (German) TOP AFD CANDIDATE FOR GENERAL ELECTION, ALICE WEIDEL, SAYING: "Our outer borders are wide open. Migrants from all over the world have come to us since 2015 without control - because they don't have any papers and we don't know who they are - but we discuss fine particulate air pollution and a driving ban for diesel cars. And that is pure cynicism, ladies and gentlemen." WEIDEL SPEAKING WEIDEL WALKING AWAY FROM LECTERN AUDIENCE GAULAND WALKING TO LECTERN (SOUNDBITE) (German) TOP AFD CANDIDATE FOR GENERAL ELECTION, ALEXANDER GAULAND, SAYING: "Dear friends, we need Russia as a Christian bulwark against an Islamic land seizure. And we need to become more fortified ourselves. Not in terms of armed force. But in terms of the will to protect our borders and yes, accept images that might not be pleasant." APPLAUSE (SOUNDBITE) (German) TOP AFD CANDIDATE FOR GENERAL ELECTION, ALEXANDER GAULAND, SAYING (ABOUT ECJ RULING) "And the ECJ of all institutions now wants to punish the Eastern European countries that have been firm, who did not take on any migrants because they are not theirs. The ECJ now wants to distribute them (migrants) to the Eastern European countries. I can just say, that is the wrong way to go. Mrs Merkel brought those people here, the Slovaks, the Czechs, the Estonians, the Lithuanians, the Poles and the Hungarians do not have to carry the burden of the things our government messed up." WIDE OF ELECTION CAMPAIGN EVENT
- Embargoed: 20th September 2017 20:54
- Keywords: borders Alternative for Germany asylum seekers ECJ ruling migrants Germany elections European Court of Justice AfD
- Location: PFORZHEIM, GERMANY
- City: PFORZHEIM, GERMANY
- Country: Germany
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA0016XGHS1Z
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: The leading candidates of Germany's anti-immigrant party Alternative for Germany (AFD) told supporters at an election campaign event on Wednesday (September 6) again that Chancellor Angela Merkel's refugee policy was the reason for the anti-immigration party's success in recent polls.
The right-wing AFD has gained support by slamming Chancellor Angela Merkel's 2015 decision to open the borders to refugees and is set to enter the national parliament for the first time after the Sept. 24 election. Polls put it on 7-11 percent.
One of the top candidates, Alice Weidel, walked out of a live television debate on Tuesday (September 5) night after being accused of failing to distance herself from right-wingers.
She did not explain her departure from the TV debate on Wednesday, only saying the "all parties in the German party spectrum want to legalize the illegal immigration. And we say: Not with us, not with the AFD."
Weidel, who styles herself as an economic expert and critic of the euro, has gradually shifted to the right since being chosen as one of the party's chancellor candidates in April.
She also criticized the debate about diesel emissions, not for losses in the car industry, the reputation of German engineering or job losses, but as a waste of time to be concerned about that.
"Our outer borders are wide open," she told the party faithful. "Migrants from all over the world have come to us since 2015 without control - because they don't have any papers and we don't know who they are - but we discuss fine particulate air pollution and a driving ban for diesel cars. And that is pure cynicism, ladies and gentlemen."
The other top candidate for the elections, Alexander Gauland, criticized the European Court of Justice for rejecting claims by Hungary and Slovakia that it was illegal for Brussels to order them to take in hundreds of mainly Muslim refugees from Syria, which they said threatened the security and stability of their societies.
Hungary and Poland have refused to host a single person under the 2015 sharing scheme, while Slovakia and the Czech Republic have each taken in only a dozen or so.
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