Europe

German neo-Nazi rally unwittingly raises cash for anti-fascists

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Media captionThe neo-Nazis unwittingly raised money for anti-fascists

A southern German town has turned the tables on an annual parade of neo-Nazis by using their march to raise thousands of pounds for an anti-fascist organisation.

Shopkeepers and residents in Wunsiedel agreed to donate 10 euros for every metre walked during the rally.

The money was then given to a charity which helps people turn their backs on far-right politics, said organisers.

Wunsiedel was once home to the grave of Adolf Hitler's deputy, Rudolf Hess.

His burial place was destroyed in 2011, but neo-Nazis still march through the Bavarian town every year.

In the past locals have sought legal action to stop the marches.

But Fabian Wichmann, who helped organise the fundraising effort, told German news agency DPA that this year they wanted to do something more creative.

"You can do more than just block the street or close the shutters," he said.

At the finishing point of the rally, which took place on Saturday and involved about 250 people, residents painted a message thanking the neo-Nazis for their donation, according to AFP news agency.

Organisers said around 10,000 euros (£8,000) was raised.

Rudolf Hess was found hanged in a West German prison in 1987.

He is perhaps best known for flying a solo mission to Scotland at the height of World War Two, on what he later said was a bid to seek peace with Britain.

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