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Thousands rally against German neo-Nazis

Thousands rally against German neo-Nazis
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There has been a massive rally in Hamburg to commemorate a string of immigrant murders blamed on neo-Nazis.

Members of the city’s Turkish, Greek and Jewish communities joined the silent march.

It follows revelations that three neo-Nazis had been killing immigrant shopkeepers for years and police have failed to connect the murders to right-wing extremists.

Hamburg’s senator Michael Neumann said Germans have been outraged by the news: “We want to make it clear that this is not only about the victims,” he said. These nazis have attacked our society, our way of life and we have to close ranks against the far-right.”

The killings have renewed calls for the far-right National Democratic Party to be banned. A previous attempt to outlaw the party collapsed nearly ten years ago and Chancellor Angela Merkel believes a ban would only drive the party underground.

But she has nonetheless promised to pursue the matter: “We must give ourselves a good chance of success because we don’t want the Constitutional Court to rule out such a move. That would strengthen the NPD,” she said.

In the meantime, the government wants to set up a new coordination centre to fight an apparent rise in neo-Nazism. Police also say they are reopening all unsolved cases with a possible racist motive since 1988.