Live Blog

Live Blog

Things are starting to come apart in Germany:

Chancellor Angela Merkel on Tuesday condemned violent far-right protests that degenerated into attacks against foreign-looking people, saying 'hate in the streets' has no place in Germany. After the fatal stabbing of a German man, 35, allegedly by a Syrian and an Iraqi, thousands of protesters marched in the eastern city of Chemnitzfor two straight days, some chasing down people they believed were immigrants.

Police reported assaults by extremists against at least three foreigners on Sunday, while investigations were opened in 10 cases of the protesters performing the illegal Hitler salute. At least 20 people were injured on Monday as pyrotechnics and other objects were hurled by both far-right demonstrators as well as anti-fascist counter-protesters in the city. 'What we have seen is something which has no place in a constitutional democracy,' Merkel told journalists.

Worth noting that the Saxon city of Chemnitz had been renamed Karl-Marx-Stadt during the communist period.

The circumstances that led to the death of the German man remain unclear, but the far-right quickly mobilised Sunday as word spread online that the key suspects were foreigners. Saxony's interior minister Roland Woeller said hooligans from across Germany, including as far as the western states of North Rhine-Westphalia and Lower Saxony, had travelled to Chemnitz for the marches.

State premier Michael Kretschmer warned that a false claim that the man was stabbed while defending a woman was circulating online, as he urged the population to seek credible news sources. He also stressed that the nationalities of the suspects were 'absolutely no reason to cast general suspicion on all foreign-born citizens'.

Saxony state, where Chemnitz is located and which is the birthplace of the Islamophobic PEGIDA street movement, has repeatedly come under intense scrutiny as a hotbed for hate crimes. The state is at the heart of misgivings over Germany's decision to welcome more than a million asylum seekers since 2015, many from war-torn Syria and Iraq.

This won't end well.