The right-wing nationalist party, Alternative for Germany (AfD) has been classified by the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV) as a “suspect case.”
With this new classification, the AfD
will now be regularly monitored by the BfV which functions as Germany’s
equivalent of a secret service, on whether their “suspicion” is substantiated.
According to the secret service,
suspect cases include organizations that are not clearly extremist in nature or
purpose, but for which there is “real evidence” of anti-constitutional
Groups or persons falling under this
category will be subjected to surveillance.
Thomas Haldenwang, President of the
BfV justified the decision of the group as merely complying with its
“BfV has strictly kept to its
statutory tasks in its assessment. As the ‘early warning system’ of democracy,
BfV and the LfVs are obliged to take action if there is actual evidence
indicating a party’s anti-constitutional orientation or that of parts of the
BfV has now classified the youth
movement of the AfD including the Thuringian AFD boss and faction leader Björn
Höcke as subject of surveillance.
Höcke was not surprised by the
classification and called the statements by the secret service as regretful.
The AfD official posted the following statement on Twitter:
“I’m already sorry for the officials
who have to kill their time looking for things that do not exist.”
AfD chief Alexander Gauland denounced
the decision of the secret service and announced that it would take legal
action against the move:
“Thank God, we are still living
in a constitutional state and will take legal action against this type of
suspicion test! Mr. Haldenwang’s reasoning is not sustainable … We think the
decision of the Office for the Protection of the Constitution is wrong. We will
take legal action against it. We consider the arguments to be unsustainable,
throughout. We believe that political pressure has led to this.”
AFD Group leader Alice Weidel also
“The fake news and false allegations
about manhunts in Chemnitz by AfD supporters were only advanced to get rid of
former BfV President Hans-Georg Maassen.”
The BfV’s decision to
classify the fast-rising AfV as a “suspect case” is nothing more than a smear
campaign from an agency desperate to reclaim old glory that had been crushed by
the wave of nationalism in 2016.