More than 150,000 people came to a demonstration against right-wing extremism and hatred in Berlin on Saturday, police in the German capital said, according to the DPA agency. The organizers of the meeting talk about an even higher number of participants, according to them around 300,000 people gathered.
In Berlin, the assembly was organized by an association of more than 1,300 organizations. “We want to show that we care about solidarity and that we are against discrimination,” said secondary school teacher Serkan Bingöl, who came to the demonstration with a group of refugees, according to DPA. He added that they would like German society to be diverse, not monotonous. Another of the protesters had a banner imitating the warning on cigarette packs. “Racism harms you and the people around you,” it said.
According to information from the investigative company Correctiv, representatives of the extreme right met in Potsdam last November and discussed the fact that large numbers of people with immigrant roots should leave Germany. Among the participants of the meeting were AfD politicians or several representatives of the opposition Christian Democratic Union (CDU).
Families with children and elderly people or those who feel threatened by the extreme right came to the demonstration, which was sometimes accompanied by rain. “I’m gay. I would definitely belong to a group that would be discriminated against by the extreme right-wing scum,” said 59-year-old Armin Dötsch.