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Germany: AfD co-leader cancels rally for 'security reasons'

October 4, 2023

Alice Weidel of the far-right party is refraining from public appearances due to growing indications that her family would be attacked, her spokesperson said. Her rally was meant to mark Unity Day.

AfD's Alice Weidel speaks to the delegates of the AfD European Election Assembly at the Magdeburg Trade Fair Centre.
Weidel of the AfD canceled her rally, with her spokesperson citing fears for her family's security as the reasonImage: Carsten Koall/picture alliance/dpa

A co-leader of the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party has canceled a political rally scheduled to mark Germany's Unity Day, citing security reasons, German media reported on Tuesday.

The AfD had invited Alice Weidel to be the keynote speaker in an event considered the highlight of the party's election campaign in Bavaria.

The event was to mark the important day in Mödlareuth - a German village situated partly in Bavaria and partly in Thuringia. The village used to be separated by the border which divided east and west Germany.

How unified is Germany, 33 years after reunification?

Why was the rally canceled?

Weidel canceled the rally as a precautionary measure, after what her spokeswoman said was an incident two weekends prior.

"Miss Weidel and her family were taken from their private home to a safe place by security authorities because there were growing indications that her family would be attacked," the spokeswoman told the German DPA news agency.

She took the decision to refrain from public appearances as a result.

Instead, she addressed her supporters in a video message, calling on voters to teach the Bavarian state government a lesson in the upcoming Sunday election.

"I would have loved nothing more than to be there with you today, but I can't," she said.

Founded a decade ago, the nationalist, anti-immigrant AfD has shown gains in recent opinion polls.

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rmt/jsi (dpa)

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