PEGIDA Demonstrations And Anti-Protests


Last week, a PEGIDA, or Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamization of the West, protest in Germany attracted 25,000 attendees. This was a record number for the organization which — as the name suggests, consists of European Nationalists who support the anti-Islamic cause. Their gathering in Dresden, one of Germany’s capital cities, was intended to protest “the Islamification of the West”.

After this historic turnout, the group organized follow-up protests in Berlin and Munich. These demonstrations, however, were not so widely received. While protesters in support of PEGIDA did attend, their numbers were dwarfed by those demonstrating against PEGIDA.

PEGIDA has received threats from Islamic terror groups targeting their protests. As a result, certain demonstrations were forced to be cancelled. PEGIDA received an offer of protection from German Chancellor Angela Merkel. While Merkel has harshly criticized the anti-Islamic group, she stated that her responsibility as leader is to protect her fellow citizen’s right to protest.

PEGIDA states that they oppose the threat Muslim immigrants present to “Germany’s Judeo-Christian culture”.  At a press conference on Monday, PEGIDA leaders said that they are not “Islam-haters” — they simply perceive a potential menace.

The group has struggled to make much of an impact outside the city of Dresden, where it was founded. Over 100,000 protesters have come out over the past week to demonstrate against PEGIDA.