Germany’s far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) has overtaken the centre-left Social Democrats (SPD), a poll showed on Tuesday, days after some of the most violent protests by radical right-wingers the country has seen in decades.
Some 6,000 supporters of the AfD and anti-Islam PEGIDA joined protests in the eastern city of Chemnitz on Saturday, following other demonstrations last week, after a fatal stabbing on Aug. 26. Two immigrants were arrested for the killing.
An INSA opinion poll on Tuesday put the AfD up half a percentage point at 17 percent, with the SPD, who share power with Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives, slipping by the same amount to 16 percent. Merkel’s conservative bloc was on 28.5 percent.
Germany’s next electoral test comes on Oct. 14 when Merkel’s Bavarian allies face a major challenge from the AfD for state government.