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The Rise of Europe's New Right

A Eurasianet partner post from RFE/RL

Two faces of Europe's refugee debate squared off this week in Dresden, where the German antimigrant movement Pegida was celebrating its first year in existence.
 
Tens of thousands of supporters of Pegida, which demands immigration reforms and rails against the purported "Islamization of the West," rallied under chilly skies in the group's birthplace on October 19. Many held German national or regional banners, and others depicted pro-immigration Chancellor Angela Merkel in what might best be described as "Euro-Nazi" garb.​
 
Their ranks had swelled considerably from some of their poorest showings of the past 12 months, when scarcely 2,000 people had come out to stir public fears of a demographic avalanche from Syria and beyond.
 
They were opposed by some 14,000 counterdemonstrators. Many were championing Merkel's open-door pronouncements on accepting war refugees. Some were protesting a vicious knife attack less than a week earlier on the newly elected mayor of Cologne, who had very publicly worked to help find shelter for migrants arriving in her city.
 

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Copyright (c) 2015. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

A Eurasianet partner post from RFE/RL

The Rise of Europe's New Right

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