Hundreds of Berliners march to protest Neo-Nazi party convention | Germany| News and in-depth reporting from Berlin and beyond | DW | 04.04.2009
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Hundreds of Berliners march to protest Neo-Nazi party convention

More than 500 demonstrators rallied outside Berlin’s Reinickendorf town hall on Saturday, April 4, to protest a party conference convened by Germany’s far-right National Democratic Party, NPD.

Police arresting a protester opposed to the NPD party convention in Berlin

The demo was largely peaceful, but 3 people got detained

Police said the protests, attended mostly by leftist parties and trade unionists, were peaceful. Three demonstrators were detained.

"We will not allow the NPD to misuse this place with its disgusting ideology," said Green Party chairwoman Claudia Roth, standing in front of the town hall.

Further protests are expected after a regional administrative court ruled on Friday that the City of Berlin could not block the neo-Nazi group from holding its party convention in the Reinickendorf town hall.

Financial turmoil

NPD chairman, Udo Voigt, is facing a challenge from a deputy, Udo Pastoers, after the party was fined 2.5 million euros ($3.4 million) for filing incorrect financial statements. It has until next month to come up with the money.

Although in dire financial straits, political observers believe the far-right party will not collapse. The NPD has made gains in regional elections and counts some 7,000 members.

Last year, it took seats on every local council it contested in the eastern state of Saxony and won more than 25 percent of the vote in a neo-Nazi stronghold near the Czech border.

An attempt to ban the party failed in 2003, but there have been a number of appeals to explore that option once again.

gb/tt, dpa/ap/afp

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