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Home News Government, opposition clash over neo-Nazis

Government, opposition clash over neo-Nazis

Published on 07/02/2005

7 February 2005

BERLIN – German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder’s spokesman on Monday lashed out at an opposition conservative leader who blamed the government for fuelling support of neo-Nazis through economic policies producing record unemployment.

Many Germans have been alarmed over the success of far-right parties, such as the National Democratic Party (NPD) which won seats in Saxony state’s parliament last year after getting almost 10 percent of the vote.

Joblessness in Saxony is almost 20 percent, compared to over 12 percent nationally. Over five million Germans are without work – the highest rate since 1933 when Nazi leader Adolf Hitler took power.

Edmund Stoiber, the Christian Social Union (CSU) Prime Minister of Bavaria state, said rising NPD support was due to “economic failures” of the Chancellor.

“(Unemployment) is the main cause for the NPD’s new strength,” said Stoiber in a weekend interview.

Schroeder spokesman Bela Anda angrily rejected the comments.

“Herr Stoiber, in his ambition to be heard, … has stooped to the lowest level,” said Anda, adding that the remarks were “cheap party politics.”

Meanwhile, a poll showed a big majority of eastern Germans want the NPD to be banned.

Some 68 percent surveyed by the magazine Super Illu called for the NPD to be outlawed.

The German government approved an NPD ban in 2000 but Germany’s highest court overturned the move in 2003.


Subject: German news