Sunday, October 22, 2006

German neo-Nazis rally outside Berlin jail

German neo-Nazis rally outside Berlin jail

BERLIN (Reuters) - A group of 750 neo-Nazi sympathisers demonstrated outside a Berlin jail on Saturday against the detention of the singer of an outlawed rock group.

German police said several hundred anti-fascists chanting "Nazis raus" (Nazis go away) were separated from the rally by police. There were no incidents of violence.

The far-rightists were protesting the detention of an obscure singer, Michael Regener. He also goes by the name "Lunikoff".

He was sentenced in December 2003 to three years and four months in jail after a court ruled his band "Landser" was a criminal organization that spread racial hatred. He began his sentence in April 2005 after losing legal appeals.

Some protesters carried posters reading "Freedom for Lunikoff" as they marched near the Tegel prison in northwestern Berlin.

Israel's ambassador to Germany, Shimon Stein, said in an interview published on Saturday in the Neue Osnabruecker Zeitung newspaper he was concerned that Jews were not feeling safe in Germany. "They are no longer able to pursue their Jewish way of life here freely," Stein said.