Police ban anti-Islam meet in German city
German police Saturday banned an extreme-right “anti-Islamification” rally in Cologne just as it was about to begin, following clashes with thousands of opponents, a spokesman said.
The spokesman said public safety was at stake, after police battled with leftists who flooded into the city centre to protest against the rally called by a local group following municipal approval for one of Europe’s biggest mosques.
The police spokesman said officers had been attacked by demonstrators who threw stones and tried to steal their weapons. Police had responded with batons.
Some 3,000 police had been drafted in and part of the old city sealed off as authorities appealed for peaceful protests against a two-day congress called by the far-right group Pro-Koeln (For Cologne).
Pro-Koeln had hoped 1,500 people would attend Saturday’s rally in the city center to oppose the mosque and an “immigrant invasion” of Europe, due to start at midday (1000 GMT) Saturday.
Those attending the congress, including far-right leaders from Belgium, Austria and Italy, were protesting against “Islamification,” and voicing support for Europe’s “shared, thousand-year history” and “Western values and Christian traditions”.
Mayor Fritz Schramma, whose city council gave the green light for the construction of the huge mosques, slammed Pro Koeln as “arsonists and racists” hiding under the cloak of a “citizens’ movement” in a speech earlier Saturday.
Well, it’s very sad that anti-islamification has this kind of publicity in the press, because far-rightists want to fulfill their own agendas and have began supporting anti-Islamification when they have seen it suited them. I really don’t think this is good for the anti-Islamism movement.
BUT it’s curious that the “public safety” was not risked by far-rightists, but by leftists who “flooded into the city center to protest against their rally“. The curious thing is that freedom of expression must be accepted from all sides. So why if there is a leftist rally, no one disputes they are putting into effect their own freedom of expression, but if this people go to a rally, it is not tolerated?
And then there is the conspiracy theories: their supporters will begin claiming they are not allowed to rally, because the powers-that-be are conspiring to transform Europe into Eurabia. And after that, they consider themselves as martyrs on the altar of freedom of expression.
If European authorities (and citizens) would be a little more intelligent, they would see their behaviour is, at least, ridiculous. Specially when this same measures (and citizens’ rallies to defend Europeans against racism) are not held when Islamists call for the beheading of Europeans or for new 9-11 to be held…
Read also what Michael has posted over at Poligazzette.