German Anti-Islam Rally Hits Record Number
Around 18,000 people have taken part in an anti-Islam rally in the German city of Dresden despite a plea by Chancellor Angela Merkel to reject the growing protests, which she has branded racist.
While the demonstration was the biggest so far, similar far-right rallies held in other German cities have been met by much bigger counter-protests.
Lights around the country were switched off in protest at the anti-immigrant demonstrations – monuments in Dresden were thrown into darkness along with Cologne Cathedral and Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate.
The rapidly expanding grassroots movement Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamisation of the West (PEGIDA) has unsettled the country’s political establishment in recent months with its weekly rallies in Dresden.
The protests have continued to grow from an initial few hundred people in October.
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