Far-Right Lawmaker in Germany Is Severely Beaten in Street Attack

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BERLIN — Three men attacked a lawmaker from the far-right party Alternative for Germany, the police said Tuesday, leaving the official with serious injuries to his head and upper body.

The lawmaker, Frank Magnitz, 66, the head of the party’s chapter in Bremen, was attacked on Monday and remained hospitalized on Tuesday, Thomas Jürgewitz, the deputy head of the Bremen chapter, said in a telephone interview. He added that Mr. Magnitz was expected to make a full recovery.

A photograph posted to Facebook by the AfD Bremen chapter showed Mr. Magnitz bloodied and bruised, with a deep gash on his forehead. The brutality of the attack and the rarity of such violence against a public official prompted widespread condemnation and calls for justice from across the country’s political spectrum.

“The brutal attack on the member of the Bundestag Frank Magnitz in Bremen is to be condemned sharply,” Steffen Seibert, a spokesman for Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government, wrote on Twitter. “Hopefully, the police will be able to catch the perpetrators quickly.”

Cem Ozdemir, a former leader of the Green party and a critic of the AfD, condemned the attack and called for justice.

“There is no justification for violence, even against the AfD,” Mr. Ozdemir wrote on Twitter. “Those who fight hate with hate always allow hate to win.”

The brutality of the attack on Mr. Magnitz prompted widespread condemnation from across Germany’s political spectrum.CreditHelmut Reuter/DPA, via Associated Press

Mr. Magnitz was attacked shortly after 5 p.m. Monday, when three men wearing dark clothes and hoods or hats jumped him as he walked to his car after an event in Bremen.

Mr. Jürgewitz said the assailants beat Mr. Magnitz with a piece of lumber, and that they kicked him after he had fallen to the ground.

Discord and verbal attacks have become increasingly commonplace since the AfD became the largest opposition force in Parliament. Physical violence against politicians is very rare in Germany, but there have been numerous attacks on political offices and property, as well as violent clashes involving people on the far right and far left.

After an explosion on Thursday in front of a local AfD office in Döbeln, in the eastern state of Saxony, the police arrested three people. It was not immediately clear whether the blast was caused by an illegal firecracker, which are widely used in New Year’s Eve celebrations in Germany, or by something more sinister.

The AfD was quick to tie the attack on Mr. Magnitz to criticism of the party by mainstream politicians and a growing antifacist movement. “Again and again, the AfD is the focus of left-wing attacks that are not condemned or even supported by the other parties,” the Bremen chapter of the party said in a statement.

Mr. Magnitz was found by two construction workers who alerted the police and called an ambulance, the police said. Investigators are trying to determine whether the construction workers stopped the attack — as Mr. Magnitz remembers — or if they came to the scene afterward. They have appealed for witnesses to come forward.

Mr. Magnitz joined the AfD in 2013, became party’s regional chief in 2015, and was elected to Parliament in 2017.

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