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Swede gives millions to German anti-Islam party

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07:48 CET+01:00
Swedish far-right businessman Patrik Brinkmann">Patrik Brinkmann has announced he will pour €5 million ($7.1 million) into the coffers of Pro NRW, an anti-Islam populist party based in Cologne, Germany

In a Sunday report aired on Germany's public broadcaster WDR, Brinkmann said he fears Germany is becoming "too foreign" and that Sharia law will be introduced in the country.

"However, there are no, or very few, politicians who take this seriously," Brinkmann said.

"That's why I believe that a new right wing (in Germany) can not only succeed, but in five or ten years be as large as the FPÖ in Austria or the SVP in Switzerland," he added, referring to Austria's Freedom Party and the Swiss People's Party, two far-right groups which have enjoyed a certain amount of electoral success.

The millionaire, who reportedly already has ties to Germany's extreme-right NPD and DVU parties, will finance a building for Pro NRW to be used as an anti-Islam centre.

Burkhard Freier, the deputy head of the North Rhine-Westphalian branch of Germany's domestic intelligence agency, the Verfassungsschutz, considers Pro NRW and a related group, Pro Köln (Pro Cologne), dangerous organizations.

However, he added that Pro NRW's membership roll is so small, around 300, that it does not have much of an influence in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany's most populous state.

"That's why they play up every new member, every property purchase and every event as big as they can on the internet so they can give their own adherents the feeling that 'we are somebody'," Freier said.

In 2004, Brinkmann founded the Continent Europe Foundation (Kontinent Europa Stiftelse – KES) in Sweden, a group seeking to establish a “greater European civilization” that will include Russia.

Brinkmann later caused a stir in 2008 when it was revealed he had purchased a €3.3-million villa in the Berlin suburbs, prompting fears on the part of German authorities that the home would become a base for neo-Nazi activities.

German intelligence agents view Patrik Brinkmann">Patrik Brinkmann as a leading figure among right-wing extremists around the world.

Although Brinkmann said at the time that the purchase was “purely private”, in 2009 a statement by the foundation conformed that Brinkmann would relocate to Berlin “by 2010 at the latest” to build a “Europe-wide Internationale of nationalists”.

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