Merkel Condemns Far-Right Tactics as Lawmakers Clash Over Unrest

(Bloomberg) -- Chancellor Angela Merkel condemned right-wing unrest that erupted in German streets in recent weeks as she sought to contain political fallout from her open-door policy on refugees.

“There’s is no justification for hounding people and Nazi propaganda,” Merkel said Wednesday in a speech to the lower house of parliament, where lawmakers clashed over rallies in eastern Germany. “The physical conflicts, whether that’s hounding or mobs, doesn’t help us.”

Tension over migration has gripped Germany in recent weeks and led to harsh exchanges in the Bundestag as mainstream politicians charge the far-right AfD party with exploiting violence allegedly from immigrants to foment public anger. Martin Schulz, the Social Democratic candidate for chancellor in last year’s election, charged the AfD with “fascist tactics” in a harshly worded rebuttal to a speech from party leader Alexander Gauland, saying he belonged “on the shitpile of history.”

Merkel has been trying to ease the tension by securing a Europe-wide agreement on stemming the flow of immigrants from the Middle East and Africa.

“The migration crisis is larger challenge for Europe than the financial crisis,” she said.

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