THE AFD will now become the third largest party in the Bundestag and promise to cause trouble for Angela Merkel’s Conservatives. But who are the AfD?
By Alice Foster
PUBLISHED: 18:23, Sun, Sep 24, 2017 | UPDATED: 18:23, Sun, Sep 24, 2017
The Alternative for Germany (AfD) secured a surpsising 13.5 per cent of the vote, according to the latets exit polls.
The anti-euro populist party has taken political advantage of anger over the migrant crisis and Angela Merkel’s decision to welcome refugees last year.
Although AfD lost momentum due to infighting, a slowdown in migrant arrivals and controversy over Germany’s Nazi past, it still managed to shape the debate around immigration.
Follwoing the annouced results, AfD canditate Alice Weidel said: ““We really got the election results tonight. Now the voters have given us a mandate and we intend to use it with all due humility.
“Millions of voters have given us their trust for constructive opposition in the Bundestag and we will deliver.”
The AfD has became more prominent in the German election race over the past few weeks, according to Emily Mansfield, Europe analyst at the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).
“It tells us that German is not immune to populism or the far right, despite its history,” she said, noting that immigration was a key issue.
Ms Mansfield said there is still an “appetite for these views” despite the other German election parties seeing the AfD as “beyond the pale”.
No other far-right party has passed the five per cent threshold to enter the German Bundestag since the defeat of the Nazis at the end of World War Two.