The right-wing, anti-immigrant Alternative for Germany party (AfD) has placed second in state elections, beating the results of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party, exit polls say.
According to the latest estimates by the German ZDF channel, the AfD has received over 21 percent of the vote in the local elections in the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.
Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union (CDU) has so far placed third, gaining 19 percent of the votes, compared to 23 in the previous elections in 2011. The ruling Socialist Democratic Party (SPD) has garnered 30 percent, which is 5 percent less than four years ago.
The projected win for the AfD, whose leaders have repeatedly demanded tougher anti-immigrant laws and lambasted Merkel for her open-door policy towards refugees, comes just a year before the federal elections.
The AfD has managed to gain voters from various parties, according to AfD leader Frauke Petry.
“The reason for that is that the voters have not been listened to for a long time,” she said, as quoted by Focus media outlet.
Source: Word News