Germany's far-right National Democratic Party (NPD) raised a public outcry for the second time this week following its plans to establish a "training center" similar to Third Reich facilities. The mastermind behind the plan is Jürgen Rieger, a lawyer and NPD deputy leader who demands the deportation of immigrants from Germany and is a great admirer of Adolf Hitler.
British newspaper the Independent reported on Thursday that the far-right party is interested in purchasing Hotel Gerhus at Fassberg, near Hanover in an effort to turn it into a place of pilgrimage for NPD supporters.
Rieger mentioned that the new facility will enable party devotees to learn of the "menace" of immigration, the "criminality" of Roma gypsies and the "innate decency of law-abiding German nationalists".
Rieger, 61, has previously been inspired by the Nazi regime. One of his plans was to create "breeding centers" for white German men and women. He stated on Wednesday that he has yet to give up on the plan and is certain he will achieve his dream one day.
Residents raise criticismHotel Gerhus has recently been closed down after its owner went into debts while the hotel went into receivership. NPD officials decided to rent the building and signed a 10-year lease. The receiver, Jens Wilhelm addressed a court demanding the neo-Nazis be forced out, but was rejected. Consequently the NDP is free to use the property until another court hearing can be convened, which may take months or years.
Rieger's refusal to back out of the scheme raised harsh criticism among Fassberg residents. Left-wing activists have already responded by announcing intentions to hold marches near the hotel. Over the weekend activists from the Left-wing and the Right-wing clashed near the hotel, however no injuries were reported.
Three days ago the party made headlines when one of its officials Udo Pastoers was charged with racism incitement after calling Germany "The Jews' Republic". In February 2009 party member Horst Mahler was convicted of inciting racial hate and Holocaust denial and was sentenced to six years imprisonment.
Mahler claimed during a speech that the Holocaust never existed, published similar statements on the Internet and distributed CD's with messages of hate and violence against Jews.