Last night, the headquarters of the Lower Saxony Memorials Foundation in Celle were attacked and vandalised. Several windows were smashed, and an information board was torn off the wall. “We have, of course, filed criminal charges”, said executive director Dr. Elke Gryglewski. This weekend, the state party conference of the far-right Alternative für Deutschland (AfD) is due to take place in Celle. The Foundation and the Bergen-Belsen Memorial, together with other organisations and individuals, called for a demonstration against the party conference. In the face of this attack, we must all come together to defend democracy, emphasized Gryglewski.
The Lower Saxony Memorials Foundation maintains the Bergen-Belsen Memorial and the memorial in Wolfenbüttel Prison; it supports memorial activities throughout Lower Saxony. The main focus of the Foundation’s work is on historical and political education at historical sites, research on the history and consequences of Nazi persecution and its lines of continuity, and on linking the past to current crimes.
“We are convinced that this is a small minority which has chosen violence to express their views. However, the foundation for violence is often laid with words. This makes it all the more important that our society takes a very clear stand for democracy. From the very start, we need to oppose defamatory, authoritarian tendencies which seek to exclude parts of society”, said Gryglewski.
“Therefore, we urge everyone to attend the protest march in Celle!”