BONN (Dec. 20)
The Jewish community in the north German city of Hanover has officially complained in a letter to the District Attorney about a major increase in neo-Nazi activity. The incidents complained of included regular Saturday meetings of members of extreme right-wing organizations in the city’s shopping center for “agitation and distributing provocative literature”; “disturbing” telephone calls to members of the Jewish community; and repeated appearances of a group of men dressed in black clothes with a skull emblem which has created a “state of fear.” A Jewish businesswoman was recently visited by such a group which threatened her. In another incident, a similar group assaulted a Jewish student. The letter also referred to incidents earlier this year in which more than 200 Jewish tombstones were desecrated and anti-Semitic slogans painted on the walls of public buildings.
The letter disputed the repeated assertion by Roetger Groess, Interior Minister of the state of Lower Saxony that such activities are the work of a small group of outsiders and are politically irrelevant. The letter said that because of the dangers of left-wing extremism in Germany, the danger from right-wing extremists is being “played down.”