German far-right elects new leaders after co-chair quits

18 June 2022, 16:24

Germany Far-Right leaders
Germany Far-Right. Picture: PA

Euro-MP Joerg Meuthen stepped down from the leadership in January, warning over extremist tendencies within the AfD.

The far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) has elected two prominent figures to lead the party for the next two years, after one of its co-chairs quit in January saying it had become too radical.

Delegates voted for AfD’s remaining co-chair, Tino Chrupalla, to head the party together with parliamentary caucus leader Alice Weidel.

The vote became necessary after Euro-MP Joerg Meuthen stepped down from the leadership in January, warning that the party risked being driven into “total isolation and ever further toward the political edge” with its current course.

Mr Meuthen was the party’s third leader to quit since Alternative for Germany was founded in 2013.

Alice Weidel
AfD’s Alice Weidel, centre, answers journalists’ questions after her election (dpa via AP)

All cited extremist tendencies within the party that have also made it the subject of scrutiny by Germany’s domestic intelligence service.

Initially formed in opposition to the euro currency, the party swung to the right in 2015 to capitalise on resentment against migrants and entered the federal parliament for the first time in 2017.

Lately, it has vocally opposed almost all pandemic restrictions and western sanctions against Russia over the war in Ukraine.

The party received just over 10% of the vote in last year’s national election.

Delegates at AfD’s congress in the eastern town of Riesa also voted Friday in favour of changing its statutes so that in future the party can be headed by a single leader.

The proposal was championed by Bjoern Hoecke, the party’s leader in Thuringia state, who is considered to be on the extreme right of the party and has espoused revisionist views of Germany’s Nazi past.

By Press Association

Latest World News

See more Latest World News

Smoke rises from building

Russian missiles target Kyiv as troops consolidate gains in the east

Pro-choice supporters

Abortion rights supporters and opponents map next move

Migrants at Spanish border

Death toll from ‘stampede’ at Spanish border in Morocco climbs to 23

A boy holds his pet dog as his family evacuated from the war-hit area gets on an evacuation train in Pokrovsk, eastern Ukraine, Saturday, June 25, 2022

Russia edges closer to swallowing up Ukraine’s last remaining Luhansk stronghold

US Rep Mary Miller, of Illinois, speaks as former President Donald Trump stands behind her on stage at a rally at the Adams County Fairgrounds in Mendon on Saturday

Congresswoman calls removal of abortion rights a ‘victory for white life’

Russia Ukraine War

Russia pushes to block second city in eastern Ukraine

President Joe Biden waves to the media as he walks to board Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, Maryland

Biden arrives in Europe ahead of G7 and Nato summits

Chicago police at the scene where a five-month-old girl was shot and killed in the South Shore neighbourhood of Chicago

Five-month-old girl shot dead in car in Chicago

Tourists fill plastic bottles with water from a public fountain at the Sforzesco Castle in Milan, Italy

Milan to turn off fountains as drought hits Italy

A photo of Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell

Seven accusers write to Ghislaine Maxwell’s sentencing judge

Vitali Klitschko

European mayors duped into calls with impostor posing as Kyiv’s Vitali Klitschko

People lay flowers at the scene of a shooting in central Oslo, Norway

Gunman kills two during Oslo Pride festival

Activists from Oxfam wear giant heads depicting G7 leaders during a demonstration in Munich, Germany

Protesters gather as G7 leaders set to arrive in Germany

The Brit fell from the Devil's Pass in northern Spain

Brit, 25, falls to his death climbing over Spain's notorious 'Devil's Pass'

Joe Biden

Biden declares ‘lives will be saved’ as he signs landmark gun legislation

Police gather at the site of a shooting in Oslo (Javad Parsa/NTB via AP)

Suspected terror-linked shooting in Oslo kills two and wounds 10