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Germany

Far-Right Party Rejects Extremist Alliance

German far-right party the Republicans voted over the weekend to opt out of an political alliance with two other fringe groups, dashing hopes of creating an extremist juggernaut ahead of the 2006 national election, according to news agency AFP. Delegates to a Republican congress in the southern state of Bavaria overwhelmingly backed a motion by the party's leadership to reject a proposed electoral alliance with the neo-Nazi National Democratic Party (NPD) and the far-right German People's Union (DVU), saying they were too radical. The motion rejected cooperation "categorically with such parties that want to eliminate our state or the free and democratic constitutional order." The delegates singled out the most extremist of the three, the NPD, which party leader Rolf Schlierer said had "an understanding of politics diametrically opposed to that of the Republicans." He accused the NPD of hoping to rip apart his party from within with its offer to join the alliance with the DVU. The leaders of the NPD and the DVU voted to join forces at a convention last month, putting aside decades of rivalry to enter joint lists of candidates for the 2006 national elections and the European elections three years later.