Iranian-Backed ‘Al Quds Day’ Anti-Zionist Hatefest Canceled for Second Year Running in Berlin
The annual “Al Quds Day” march and rally calling for the violent elimination of the State of Israel will not take place in Berlin next month for the second year running, police in the German capital confirmed on Thursday.
Sponsored by the Iranian regime, the annual event is staged in Tehran and several other cities, and prominently features the flag of Hezbollah, Iran’s proxy Shi’a terrorist organization in Lebanon, which is banned in Germany and other European nations.
The newspaper Der Taggespiegel quoted Michael Fischer — the head of the Office for the Protection of the Constitution in the State of Berlin — telling local politicians earlier this month that there had been no mobilization for this year’s march, but warning that it may take place online instead.
Holger Krestel — spokesman for legal affairs and constitutional protection for the liberal FDP Party in the Berlin House of Representatives — welcomed the march’s cancelation. “As a result, Berlin has escaped political damage this time,” Krestel said on Thursday. “Of course, it would be even more welcome if the organizers would stop their activities in Berlin all year round and permanently.”
The news of the march’s cancelation follows the demand lodged by Krestel and other Berlin politicians earlier this month for the police to prevent it from taking place.
Last year’s march was canceled shortly after the outright ban on Hezbollah announced by Interior Minister Horst Seehofer on April 30, 2020 — a day that witnessed multiple raids by police in different German cities on Islamic associations allegedly linked to the terror group. Security officials disclosed at the time that more than 1,000 supporters of what they termed Hezbollah’s “extremist wing” were based in Germany.
In 2019, more than 2,000 anti-Israel demonstrators gathered to chant antisemitic and anti-Zionist slogans near Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate to mark “Al Quds Day.” At one point, a Jewish counter-demonstrator was told by an organizer of the rally that “Hitler needs to come back and kill the rest of the Jews.”
A coalition of NGOs opposed to the “Al Quds Day” rally warmly welcomed this year’s cancelation in a separate statement on Thursday.
“We expressly thank all supporters from political parties, culture, religious communities and civil society, who have clearly expressed with their statements that this march of hate must have no place here,” the statement declared. “We appeal to the Senate Department of the Interior to have a well-founded ban order ready for a possible upcoming Al Quds rally in 2022. Berlin can do without this ‘antisemitism spreader’ event.”
Organizations that signed the statement included the Jewish Students Union in Germany (JSUD), the Jewish Forum Against Antisemitism and for Democracy, the German-Israel Friendship Society and the Amadeu Antonio Foundation, an anti-racist organization named in memory of the Angolan contract worker who was beaten to death by far-right thugs in November 1990.