Merkel has been Germany’s chancellor since 2005 and will run for a fourth term next fall. She will have to face Frauke Petry of AfD.
While Merkel has said she will stand against AfD and other right-wing populist parties, the manifesto for her next campaign includes some similar ideas. It says that Merkel is reaching out to those “who see themselves as losers of modernization and seek shelter in populist parties on both the right and the left.” The manifesto proposes a ban on wearing the burqa (full body veil) in public court hearings and proposes sanctions or even deportation for those who refuse to integrate into German society.
Many in Germany oppose the increasing amount of right-wing populism and anti-immigration rhetoric.
On April 30, 2,000 protestors tried to break up AfD’s first full conference after they won several seats in the German congress in March. Some of the protestors burned tires and hurled stones and fireworks to try and stop AfD’s conference. 400 people were arrested and clashes broke out between the protesters and party activists.
“No rights for Nazi propaganda,” one of the protestors said in response to AfD.