Saxony State Premier Michael Kretschmer traveled to Chemnitz on Thursday as part of a statewide election campaign tour. At the same time, a far-right rally, this time unopposed by an anti-Nazi counterprotest, took place on the streets.
The previously-scheduled event, designed to give Kretschmer the chance to speak to ordinary citizens, became a particularly sensitive gathering in the wake of the killing of 35-year-old Daniel H., apparently by two men of Syrian and Iraqi origin, and subsequent far-right violence in the city on Sunday and Monday.
Adding to the tense atmosphere, Pro Chemnitz — the same far-right group that had organized Monday’s protest, at which several people were filmed giving Hitler salutes — called another rally outside the city’s sports stadium, where Kretschmer’s event was taking place. The group did not respond to a DW request for comment on whether it would be undertaking any measures to stop people giving Nazi salutes on Thursday.
This time, far fewer than Monday’s 6,000 demonstrators appeared, and, perhaps because of the lack of a counterprotest, there was less potential for street violence. Nevertheless, at least two individuals appeared to face down the rally, which resulted in noisy, raging shouting matches, but no violence.