Email
Password
Remember meForgot password?
    Log in with Twitter

article imageNeo-Nazi rally draws counterprotests in Stockholm

By AFP     Aug 25, 2018 in World

Around 300 neo-Nazi activists demonstrated in central Stockholm on Saturday, drawing boos from protesters and politicians seeking to ban their movement.

Under the close watch of a detachment of police in riot gear, activists from the Nordic Resistance Movement (NRM) gathered in a square in the Swedish capital.

At the edges of the square, hundreds of counter-demonstrators gathered behind a security cordon, shouting slogans and banging the metal barriers in a bid to drown out the NRM speeches.

Among the protesters was Culture Minister Alice Bah Kuhnke, who was born to a Gambian father and a Swedish mother.

Both the rally and the counter-protests ended peacefully without incident, an AFP correspondent said.

Hundreds joined a counter-protest to oppose the neo-Nazi rally in central Stockholm with the two sid...
Hundreds joined a counter-protest to oppose the neo-Nazi rally in central Stockholm with the two sides kept apart by barriers
Fredrik Persson, TT News Agency/AFP

Sweden, which boasts a long tradition of welcoming refugees and persecuted groups, is experiencing a creeping rise in neo-Nazi activities in public and on social media.

NRM, which was founded in 1997, is a political party which openly promotes a racist and anti-Semitic doctrine and has been described as the country's most violent Nazi organisation by Swedish anti-racism magazine Expo.

Although the group counts a core membership of barely 80 members, it was more active than ever before in 2017, the magazine said earlier this year.

NRM says it wants to usher in a national socialist government.

Among those who took to the streets of Stockholm to protest against the neo-Nazi rally was Swedish C...
Among those who took to the streets of Stockholm to protest against the neo-Nazi rally was Swedish Culture minister Alice Bah Kuhnke and Holocaust survivor Hedi Fried
Pontus LUNDAHL, TT News Agency/AFP

For the first time in its 21-year history, the NRM will present a list of 24 candidates to run in September 9 elections, although the party is unlikely to pass the 4.0 percent threshold to enter parliament.

One of its candidates is facing a police investigation for raising a flag on April 20 in honour of Adolf Hitler's birthday.

Writing on Facebook on Saturday, Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven said he wanted to ban neo-Nazi organisations.

"Democracy has always had the right to protect itself from the forces willing to resort to violence to destroy it," he said.

More about Sweden, Politics, Demonstration, Racism
More news from