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Far-right AfD co-leader contracts COVID

November 11, 2021

Alice Weidel, the joint leader of the far-right Alternative for Germany party, has tested positive for coronavirus. She has long railed against vaccination requirements and COVID restrictions.

Weidel has not been vaccinated, and her party has campaigned against anti-COVID measures
Weidel has not been vaccinated, and her party has campaigned against anti-COVID measuresImage: Tobias Schwarz/AFP/Getty Images

The co-chair of the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) parliamentary group, Alice Weidel, has contracted COVID-19. 

Weidel's spokesman Daniel Tapp said that "after she noticed flu-like symptoms, she took a [COVID] test."

"She immediately placed herself in quarantine at home."

During the recent federal election campaign, Weidel campaigned against restrictions on civil liberties and public gatherings in order to contain the pandemic. She has long stressed that she herself has not been vaccinated against COVID.

Most recently, Weidel came out in support of Germany and Bayern Munich footballer Joshua Kimmich. The player cited concerns over long-term side effects when explaining why he, as a young man and professional athlete, had yet to get vaccinated.

Weidel said the player should not have to justify his decision.

Far-right AfD still holds appeal in the east

On Tuesday, Kimmich had to enter isolation along with four other players after one of them, Niklas Süle, tested positive. 

In late October, Weidel's fellow AfD co-leader in the Bundestag, Tino Chrupalla, had to enter quarantine when he contracted coronavirus. With the question of being legally forced to declare your vaccination status by employers a talking point during the election, Chrupalla repeatedly said this should be a private matter and that he would not comment on his personal status.

The AfD party — which is home to a substantial number of vaccine skeptics and coronavirus deniers — described many of Germany's lockdown restrictions in its 2021 election manifesto as "disproportionate," saying that many should be scrapped. It has also challenged several of them in court.

rc/msh (AFP, dpa)