Iran’s presence at the World Cup has stirred anger amongst Jewish groups in Germany.
They have staged the first of what they promise to be several demonstrations in protest against the government which has called for the destruction of Israel. A rally in Nuremberg was planned to coincide with Iran’s face off with Mexico. Michel Friedman is a Jewish community leader : “We have reached a point where Iran’s president has become the new symbol of the Nazi movement in Germany and across Europe. German Nazis are welcoming him and can hardly wait for him to come to Germany. Ideologically, he is the worst that has come after Hitler,” he said.
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has left open whether he will go over to Germany – but he did send his vice-president for the game against Mexico.Jewish groups say the government must take a strong stand against such politicians attending. They fear their presence will attract neo-Nazis who support the Iranian team because of Tehran’s perceived anti-Semitic stance.