Berlin bans fast-growing neo-Nazi group

The Australian/November 5, 2009

Authorities in Berlin have banned a neo-Nazi group whose members appeared in public wearing a black uniform similar to that worn by Hitler's paramilitary "storm troops".

Police conducted dawn raids at the Berlin homes of leading members of the "Frontmann 24" group, described as "the fastest-growing neo-Nazi organisation in Berlin" by Ehrhart Koerting, the city's interior minister.

"The ban should be seen in the context of a decisive fight against far-right efforts in Germany and as an important step towards protecting our free and democratic constitutional order," Mr Koerting said.

The group, which takes its name from a forerunner to the "storm troops" set up in 1924, had previously published material insulting immigrants and Jews.

A spokeswoman for Mr Koerting said the group had between 40 and 60 members but was quickly attracting more. No arrests were made during the raids.

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