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Germany to surveil far-right party for posing threat to democracy

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BERLIN (AFP) — Germany’s domestic security agency has placed the far-right AfD under surveillance for posing a threat to democracy, parliamentary sources said Wednesday, dealing a blow to the anti-immigration party in a big election year.

The Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV) has classified the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party as a “suspected case” of having ties to right-wing extremism, the sources told AFP.

The decision, made late last week according to a report in Der Spiegel weekly, will allow intelligence agents to shadow the party, tap its communications and possibly use undercover informants.

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It follows a two-year investigation and a report containing some 1,000 pages of evidence, including several hundred speeches and statements by AfD members at all party levels, Der Spiegel said.

However, lawmakers, as well as candidates standing in September’s general election, will be excluded from the monitoring, said the parliamentary sources, noting that such surveillance would require even more stringent justifications. People hold flags during a demonstration by Germany’s nationalist party AfD (Alternative for Germany) on May Day in Erfurt, central Germany, May 1, 2017. (AP/Jens Meyer)

The BfV said it was unable to comment on the case in view of pre-emptive........

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