These weekly protests have been growing in size, and are spreading from Dresden to other German cities.
A record 17,000 people have joined the latest in a string of demonstrations against Islam in Dresden, eastern Germany, celebrating the rise of their far-right populist movement by singing Christmas carols. The march on Monday night was organized by Patriotic Europeans Against Islamization of the West [German acronym PEGIDA] — a group that has grown rapidly since its first protest in October.
Among the slogans the protesters carry on placards are “Against religious fanaticism” and “Against religious wars on German soil.”
Most Pegida followers insist they are not Nazis but patriots who worry about the “watering down” of their Christian-rooted culture and traditions.