The East German city of Chemnitz has so far seen two days of street protests after a man was stabbed allegedly by two Middle Eastern migrants died in the hospital.
Daniel Hillig, a 35-year-old married German-Cuban, was stabbed early in the morning on Sunday after the conclusion of a street festival. The altercation, which supposedly occurred by a cashpoint, reportedly left two other men in their 30s hospitalized with stab wounds, and resulted in the arrest of a 22-year-old Syrian and a 23-year-old Iraqi.
The event proved a tipping point for thousands of concerned and angry citizens, who took to the streets in protests which, rather than abating, only grew stronger by the second day, catching police unprepared.
Originally organized by a local ‘far right’ football club, the demonstrations, reported to be overwhelmingly male, included members of the mainstream nationalist Alternative for Deutschland (AfD) party, the nationalist anti-Islam movement PEGIDA, and the far-right NPD.
Protestors carried German flags, signs that read “Stop the Refugee Flood” and “Defend Europe,” and chanted slogans including “we are the people,” “this is our city,” “Germany for the Germans,” “foreigners out,” and “lying press.” A few gave the illegal Roman salute.
Some clashed with police and left-wing counter-protestors, who yelled and carried signs against “Nazis” and “Nazi propaganda.” A total of 20 people were injured.