Alarming Rise in Right-Wing Extremism Detailed in German Security Report 2023

Alarming Rise in Right-Wing Extremism Detailed in German Security Report 2023

The head of Germany’s domestic intelligence agency, Thomas Haldenwang, delivered a sobering assessment of the security situation in his presentation of the German Security Report 2023. Several concerning trends and the further increase of right-wing extremism were highlighted:

Haldenwang focused on the following main trends in Germany’s interior security:

  • External and internal security are directly interlinked. In the context of Russia’s attack on Ukraine, we were directly confronted with diverse activities of Russian intelligence services in and against Germany during the reporting year.
  • The inhumane terrorist attack by Hamas on Israel escalated another conflict beyond our borders with direct implications for internal security. This further increased the already heightened threat potential from Islamist terrorism in Germany over the past months.
  • Moreover, the Middle East conflict acted as an accelerant for antisemitism in Germany.
  • The networking activities of the so-called “New Right” have continued to increase. The significance of these actors for the internal structure of the right-wing extremist scene is growing.
  • The dangers emanating from violence-oriented left-wing extremists remain undiminished. This is evidenced by well-planned, brutal attacks on political opponents, significant violence against the police, and severe arson attacks on companies and critical infrastructure.
  • Lastly, the number of extremists has once again risen in almost all areas of phenomena, just as the number of violence-oriented extremists has increased.

In his speech, Thomas Haldenwang again explicitly highlighted right-wing extremism as central to violent threats.

Surge in Violent Incidents
The number of violent acts by right-wing extremists rose by 13% to 1,148 cases in 2023, with 1,016 of those being assaults. Alarmingly, there were four attempted murders motivated by far-right ideology. This escalation of violence from extremist circles poses a grave threat to public safety.

Increase in Demonstrations
Right-wing demonstrations spiked by a staggering 153%, reaching 307 events compared to 145 the previous year. Many of these rallies centered on anti-asylum and anti-immigration themes, revealing the prevalence of xenophobic sentiments among these groups.

Proliferation of Hate Music Events
The number of right-wing music events promoting hate ideologies reached unprecedented levels in 2023. These gatherings serve as recruiting grounds and help spread the toxic philosophies of white supremacy and neo-Nazism.

Expansion of “New Right” Movement
Haldenwang’s agency classified the “One Percent” association and the “Institute for State Policy” as confirmed right-wing extremist organizations in 2023, after careful examination. This month, the “Antaios Verlag” publishing house was also designated as an extremist entity, reflecting the growing influence of the so-called “New Right” intellectual movement.

The report paints a deeply alarming picture of the resurgence of far-right radicalism in Germany. Haldenwang warned that public discourse is shifting from reasoned debate toward aggressive confrontation across all areas of extremist activity. Urgent action is needed from authorities and civil society to counter this disturbing trend and uphold democratic values.

The German Security Report 2023 can be found here.