About 50 members of the German Identitarian movement stormed the offices of the Justice Ministry in Berlin on Friday in protest against a massive crackdown on freedom of speech in Germany.
The group arrived in a rental truck carrying a 32-foot ladder and tried to climb onto the roof of the ministry, while throwing pyrotechnics, a police spokesman told national daily Die Welt.
“They were driving a truck, with a big ladder on it and wanted to enter the ministry,” an eyewitness told the paper.
Earlier, an unannounced demonstration called for Justice Minister Heiko Maas to step down, and for the borders of the European Union to be strengthened, with some participants wearing uniforms in the style of the former East Germany’s People’s Police.
Police managed to stop the rush, and the leader of the group was arrested.
A few hours later, a group of 20 protesters remained outside the barricaded ministry, erecting a banner criticizing the prohibition of opinion.
On Friday morning Maas introduced a draft law to the Bundestag which requires social media networks to remove any references to the mass nonwhite invasion of Germany, and which forbids the spreading of any news which has not come through channels or journalists which the government has officially endorsed.
Ironically, this is all being done to “protect democracy,” the law’s proponents say, blatantly ignoring the fact that they are in fact suppressing democracy.
The proposed legislation is so outrageous that even the normally pro-establishment liberal party, the Free Democrats (FDP) have rejected it, calling it “a threat to free speech.”
The populist Alternative for Germany (AfD) has announced that it will file a complaint with the Constitutional Court should the draft become law. Both of these parties are likely to be part of the Bundestag after September’s national elections.
A large number of other organizations have also announced their opposition to the law. When the cabinet approved the draft law in April, a number of these groups joined together to issue a “declaration of freedom of speech” rejecting the legislation.
The groups include Wikimedia Germany, journalist organizations such as Reporters without Borders, internet activists like the Chaos Computer Club, and several lawyers who question whether the law would stand up to judicial challenges. Even Facebook Germany announced that it would oppose the law through legal means.