Anti-immigration parties booed in Prague
Europe’s leading anti-immigration parties gathered in Prague at the weekend for a conference aimed at coordinating their policies and rallying anti-EU, anti-immigration forces on the continent. On their way into the heavily fortified hotel on the outskirts of Prague they were booed by hundreds of demonstrators chanting “shame” and “NO to fascism, populism and xenophobia”.
“These people should just be arrested and taken away so that we can go through and carry on with democracy.“
Inside the conference hall party leaders criticized the European Union and its policy of mass migration. Geert Wilders congratulated the Czech Republic on resisting the tide and said he hoped the country would keep its doors closed to migrants. However he warned that the big picture in Europe gave serious cause for concern. “In 30 or 50 years’ time, the Czech Republic will be surrounded by countries where 20 percent of the population will be Muslim.” Mr. Wilders said. “That is as if the Czech Republic became a Gaza Strip. We need to prevent mass migration even if it means building a wall.”
The host of the conference, the leader of the Party of Freedom and Direct Democracy Tomio Okamura, basked in the show of unity. He spoke of the need to work for a Europe that would respect national identity, sovereignty and independence.
“All that we want to maintain of the European Union is free movement of people, goods, capital and services.”
The party of Freedom and Direct Democracy emerged as a strong force in October’s parliamentary elections, placing third with close to 11 percent of the vote, but despite its stated desire to be in government, it has been shunned as a possible coalition partner by the winning ANO party.
This fate is shared by similar-minded parties elsewhere in Europe –with the exception of Austria – a fact that Geert Wilders lamented in his address.
Although the gathering of anti-migrant parties was booed by hundreds of protesters in Prague, the majority of Czechs do not want mass migration in the country. According to the latest poll on the subject four fifth of Czechs are against accepting migrants from Muslim countries even if it were to mean losing EU funds. The fact that this policy line is upheld by practically all parliamentary parties, including the traditional parties, is the only reason why the Freedom and Direct Democracy Party has not drummed up even more support.