#GermanyDecides: Dresden voters talk PEGIDA, elections


The integration official

"It is important to vote, because it is a privilege to live in a democracy and be able to vote," says Markus Degenkolb, managing director of the Ausländerrat Dresden, which counsels immigrants. "I think it was a positive side effect of PEGIDA that the citizens of Dresden got more involved with politics." He was referring to an anti-Islam group that began in Dresden.


The AfD politician

"I was not politically active before, but, when Mrs. Merkel said 'the euro rescue has no alternative,' the AfD party came at the right moment," says Kirsten Muster, a member of the right-wing Alternative for Germany in Saxony's state parliament."The discussion of public security and the distinction between asylum law and immigration: These topics interested me."


Fighting the right

"Claiming that people aren't equal because they are born in different places is crossing a line for me," says Michael Nattke. He is helping civil groups combat right-wing violence. "An AfD politician will not beat somebody up, but saying people don't belong here will motivate those prone to be violent to do so."


The AfD sympathizer

"I have worked in a refugee shelter, but that has not changed my perspective," says Michel Honauer, who is considering voting for the AfD. "We have to treat people correctly, sure. But people have to accept that they are only guests here, and they don't. I will protect what I love. That's that."


The concerned citizen

"It is more multicultural," says Carmen, who lives in Dresden's Strehlen district. "You see that with the kids playing here. It is enriching, but not everybody thinks so. There are many who complain and shout right-wing slogans at night. PEGIDA is damaging us as the authorities are so busy with them. The shops in the city are suffering, but politicians don't see that."

How do people in Saxony's state capital view the anti-Islam movement PEGIDA, the far-right Alternative for Germany party and the general election in September? DW reporters asked them.