German Jewish leaders meet in Hamburg as neo-Nazis march

One day after violent clashes erupted at a neo-Nazi march in Hamburg, Germany’s top Jewish leader urged Germans to declare their country “a fascist-free zone.”

Speaking in Hamburg on June 3, Dieter Graumann, head of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, said everyone should follow the example of the 10,000 local residents who held an anti-Nazi rally June 2 under the slogan “Hamburg shows its true colors.”

Graumann’s remarks capped a weekend-long gathering of 240 Jews from around the country, titled “One People, One Community,” which coincidentally occurred on the same weekend as the neo-Nazi march.

Graumann said the federal courts should try again to ban the far-right National Democratic Party of Germany, which has an estimated 7,000 members but reaches far more through propaganda. In recent years, the party has gained enough votes to earn a few seats in local parliaments, which qualifies it for taxpayer funding. — jta