The court agreed, however, that the NPD resembled the Nazi party and violated the constitution, but was in no position to govern.
The 16 German federal states wanted a ban on the NPD amid fears of a rise in far-right popularity following the arrival of large numbers of migrants.
AFP news agency (@AFP) January 17, 2017
Malu Dreyer, President of the Bundesrat spoke following the ruling :“Even if the ban was not pushed through, the constitutional court did confirm the anti-constitutional nature of the NPD. So the efforts of the trial as pursued by the federal states were of great importance and I can only thank the interior ministers for their painstaking work that made this process possible in the first place.”
The NPD lacks support across the country with the anti-migrant Alternative for Germany picking up the far-right vote.
A number of groups have condemned the courts decision calling it a retrograde step and a victory for intolerance.