Politicians from Germany’s AfD met extremist group to discuss deportation ‘masterplan’

Martin Sellner, member of the Identitarian Movement, reportedly spoke of ‘re-migration’ ideas

By Philip Oltermann in Berlin
Wed 10 Jan 2024

Politicians from Germany’s far-right Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) party, including a personal aide to its leader Alice Weidel, met the head of the rightwing extremist Identitarian Movement and neo-Nazi activists to discuss a “masterplan” for mass deportations in the event of the party coming to power, it has been reported.

The meeting, which was first reported on Wednesday by the investigative outlet Correctiv, took place last November at a countryside hotel on the outskirts of Potsdam. It is likely to feed a fraught debate over whether the AfD should be banned due to growing concerns that it poses a fundamental threat to German democracy.

Buoyed up by discontent over immigration, the AfD is polling in first place in all five of Germany’s eastern states, three of which are holding elections later this year. While both the conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU) and the liberal, pro-business Free Democratic party (FDP) have, for now, ruled out entering coalitions with the party, its presence at the meeting suggests a far-right organisation with its eye on political gains in the near future.

Invitations seen by Correctiv and the Guardian describe the meeting as an opportunity to present “an overall concept in the sense of a masterplan”. The meeting was attended not only by two state and municipal-level AfD politicians but also one active member of the Bundestag, Gerrit Huy, as well as Roland Hartwig, a former MP who has acted as a personal aide to Weidel since September 2022. One party branch of the AfD’s has described Hartwig as being tasked with the party’s “strategic positioning”.

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The AfD figures were meeting with Martin Sellner, who was tasked with introducing the “masterplan” and is a key figure in the pan-European “New Right” and who, in 2019, was permanently barred from entering the UK because of his extremist views. The Identitarian Movement, whose Austrian branch Sellner used to lead, openly opposes the idea of multicultural societies and expounds the conspiracy theory of a “great replacement” to replace Europe’s white population with people from Africa and the Middle East.

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