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Lights are switched off in cities across Germany in protest against anti-Islam PEGIDA group

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By Euronews
Lights are switched off in cities across Germany in protest against anti-Islam PEGIDA group

<p>Cologne Cathedral was plunged into darkness in a protest against extremism on Monday evening ( Jan 5)</p> <p>It was one of several such events orchestrated by opponents of a group campaigning against what it sees as the “Islamisation “ of Europe called <a href="http://www.dw.de/pegida-determining-political-debate-in-germany/a-18124875" rel="external">PEGIDA </a></p> <p>In Berlin the Brandenburg Gate was likewise unlit as both pro and counter <span class="caps">PEGIDA</span> demonstrations took place.</p> <p>Critics accuse the group of being led by racists and the far-right, although many <span class="caps">PEGIDA</span> members claim they are just expressing concern against the rise in Muslim asylum seekers.</p> <p>Reporting euronews from Berlin Patrick Wauthier said:</p> <p>“At this first demonstration in Berlin, <span class="caps">PEGIDA</span> opponents out numbered <span class="caps">PEGIDA</span> supporters by ten to one. We will have to wait until next Monday’s follow- up event to see how things develop.</p> <p>Even in “Dresden“http://www.euronews.com/2014/12/16/around-15000-turn-out-for-dresden-s-biggest-ever-pegida-anti-islam-rally/, the birth place of the <span class="caps">PEGIDA</span> movement, the lights were turned off while 18,000 of their supporters marched through the city centre.</p> <span class="caps">PEGIDA</span> members who claim to be ordinary conservative people say they are distrustful of the media which they blame for giving them a bad image. <p>Most are reluctant to talk to the press but one did give his opinion to our reporter:<br /> “We are all very peaceful here , you might mention that. it is always reported in the media quite differently, no matter if it is peaceful, in print or on the television the reports are inaccurate.”</p> <p>A recent poll ( in Germany’s Stern magazine) of 1,000 people found one in eight Germans would join an anti-Islam march if <span class="caps">PEGIDA</span> held one near their home. </p> <p>Germany receives more refugees and asylum seekers than any other EU country. Many of those have come from war-torn Syria.</p>