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1 Apr, 2016 20:50

‘AfD is the only party that really cares about refugees’ – senior AfD member to RT

Economic migrants coming to Europe should be separated from refugees in real need, Hansjoerg Mueller, of the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, argued in an interview with RT.

He also commented on the roots of the current migration crisis and solutions to it, as well as the role of Islam in German society.

Hansjoerg Mueller, an official at the AfD’s Bavarian branch, has spoken of the most pressing issues faced by German society. The party recently secured considerable gains in 2016’s regional elections, coming third after Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats and Social Democratic Party.

READ MORE: Anti-immigrant AfD comes in third in German local elections, mainstream parties ‘terrified’

However, AfD has been accused of populism and criticized for some harshly-worded statements, such as warnings that Merkel’s migration policy would end up causing civil war.

“The vast majority of refugees coming to Germany aren’t refugees, [they] have been living in refugee camps in Turkey [and] don’t come from war areas. These people only seek a better life,” Mueller argued. He said economic migrants should be separated from those in real need, and maintained that AfD is no stranger to helping “real refugees.”

“Alternative for Germany is the only party that really cares about these people,” Mueller said. “But in order to really help refugees we have to sort them out, bring in real refugees, care about them and feed them. But this is impossible if they’re [confused] with economic immigrants.”

The AfD’s leader, Frauke Petry, came under fire for her recent proposal to use firearms against refugees trying to cross the border illegally.

“This is typical misinterpretation by state propaganda and state-controlled Western media,” Mueller said. “Frauke Petry never said this and was misinterpreted from the beginning.”

Inside Germany, the heavy influx of migrants was met with an unprecedented rise of extremism and also violence against refugee shelters. Since the beginning of 2015, at least 817 attacks have been carried out, up from 199 cases in 2014.

Mueller said those attacks aren’t welcome, and accused Western governments of giving immigrants better treatment at the expense of the native population. “The citizens of Germany, France, Britain or Denmark now understand that their own governments pursue policies that are unconstitutional and in the long run will wipe out the original population.

“And these are not conspiracy theories – the UN in 2000 claimed there must be an influx of about 1.5 million refugees to central Europe to compensate for the demographic problem. And this is how things have arisen,” he argued.

He also asserted that by welcoming refugees Merkel’s government and other German parties undermine the constitutional order and violate immigration law. However, he gave no clear examples of this.

“We are the last defenders of the constitution, we are the last defenders of the rule of law. To defend the constitution, we have to secure borders. If people get in illegally, deport them and you don’t have to shoot at anyone.”

The AfD member also discussed Islam and integration of Muslims in German society. Both issues are at the heart of a heated debate. Earlier on Wednesday, the party’s Lower Bavarian branch released a policy paper entitled, “The Courage to take Responsibility”. It states that Islam contradicts the constitution and “does not belong in Germany.”

“It has to do with institutional rights that arise from the roots of tradition and the roots of society,” said Müller, when asked to comment on the statement. “German society has roots of 2,000 years of Christianity and there are no roots of Islam.”

He added that Muslims “have the right to practice their religion both at home and in public, go to mosques and so on.” Nevertheless, the policy document highlights a proposal to close all mosques already operating or under construction in Germany, because they disseminate “Islamic teachings directed towards the removal of our legal order."

According to Müller, “35 percent of AfD voters are migrants with German passports.” The party’s electorate, he said, include middle-class citizens and not far-right sympathizers. Mueller dismissed suggestions that popular support for the AfD would shrink once the refugee crisis is solved. He also denied allegations that the party might profit from a civil war that could break out because of Merkel’s migration policy.

However, if AfD gets to power and implements its program, the refugee crisis “would be solved in 10 minutes,” the party official promised.