Election campaign in lower saxony: posters down, “snout full”.

Three Sinti from Osnabruck make a video of themselves taking down an NPD poster. They receive applause for this on the Internet – and from local politicians.

Destroyed NPD poster: Three Sinti receive applause on the Internet for a hanging action. Picture: dpa

They could have removed the poster in a night-and-fog action. Instead, three Sinti from Osnabruck made a video of themselves taking down an NPD poster with the slogan "Money for grandma, instead of for Sinti and Roma." "We don’t want our children to see this," they say. And cut the poster with a knife from the post. They put the video on Facebook.

Local politicians reacted to the action, along with others: "We can absolutely understand this action," writes the Osnabruck SPD in an official statement. "Osnabruck is a city of peace, tolerance is a core concern for us," says Jens Martin, chairman of the SPD. He has great understanding for the action. "Even if we explicitly do not call for imitating the three." Instead, the SPD calls on the city to "think about ways to prevent such demagogic propaganda in the future."

"We know that we are committing a crime with it," the men say in the video. They did not want to incite violence with it, but to give a face to those who were affected. "Because we are fed up." They think it is the city’s job to take down the posters. Because the slogan of the NPD has nothing to do with freedom of speech, finds Jers Jimmy Dean Laubinger.

SPD man Martin weighs in: "The city’s hands are legally tied," he says, referring to a decision by the Kassel Administrative Court in September. The court ruled that the slogan on the posters did not constitute incitement of the people, as they did not clearly call for "arbitrary measures against Roma and Sinti". The ruling was prompted by a lawsuit filed by the NPD against the city of Bad Hersfeld, which had taken down said posters. "As a result, the city had to put all the posters back up," Martin said.

The slogans on the posters are similar. In the European election campaign, not only the AfD demands no "immigration into our social systems," immigration into the social systems stop!!!!!" also want the Republicans (REP).

According to a survey by Infratest-Dimap, the REP led by Rolf Schlierer have "good chances" of entering the European Parliament.

With more moderate rhetoric than in the past, they advocate strict limits on immigration and complete adaptation to the "Christian occidental culture."

The REPThe union, which claims to have 6,500 members, is also demanding the reintroduction of the deutschmark and Germany’s withdrawal from the EU.

The ruling has since been invoked not only in Osnabruck. In Nuremberg, too, where the Association of German Sinti and Roma demanded that the posters be taken down, the city says it has no recourse. However, Hamburg lawyer Hendrik Schulze puts it into perspective: "If there is no higher administrative court ruling, other administrative courts could theoretically rule differently."

Statement of the NPD

And what about when those affected fight back themselves by taking down the poster? According to Schulze, this is damage to property, which could result in criminal proceedings. For example, if the NPD filed charges. But instead of pressing charges, the NPD of Lower Saxony has already reacted to the action in another way: with a written statement. In doing so, however, they prompted the three Sinti to comment on the NPD response in another video. "I think our audience is a lot bigger than the NPD’s at the moment," says Laubinger.

That’s because the SPD wasn’t the only one to respond. "People contacted us from all over Germany," Laubinger says. "Many wrote to us that they had reconsidered their views because of what we were doing." He takes a split view of the fact that the Osnabruck SPD also expressed a favorable opinion. "On the one hand, we are happy about every positive reaction, at the same time, our action is of course a welcome invitation for politics to jump on a moving train."

For the three, this action should not have been the last. "After the broad echo, we feel obliged to continue," says Laubinger. Under the motto "Money for Grandma, collected by Sinti and Roma", they want to raise money for a retirement home with a benefit concert.