Police in the eastern city of Dresden have issued a blanket ban on all demonstrations following reports of a “concrete threat” against the founding member of the anti-Islamization movement Pegida (Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamization of the West), the daily Die Welt reports on its front page Monday.
Pegida had been marching in growing numbers in Dresden and other German cities for 12 consecutive Mondays since October. But weekly counter-marches, much larger in numbers, have also been organized across the country to protest against the far-right movement.
The organizers explained the ban on their Facebook page: “We are forced to make this decision after discussing with the police services,” adding that this was “a serious breach to freedom of opinion and demonstration” by “terrorist forces.”
German and foreign intelligence services reportedly intercepted communications between “known jihadists” in which they learned “assassins” would mix in with the crowd to kill one of the leaders of the movement, Die Welt reports. Instead of marching, Pegida asks its sympathizers to express their opinion by displaying a German flag and a candle on their home windows.