Ho­tel ousts far right

The Jewish Chronicle - - WORLD NEWS - BY TOBY AX­EL­ROD BER­LIN

A GER­MAN hote­lier has out­wit­ted the coun­try’s main far-right party, by threat­en­ing to do­nate the in­come from their stay to the lo­cal syn­a­gogue if they did not can­cel their book­ing.

Hote­lier Jo­hannes Lohmeyer of Of­fen­bach, in the for­mer East Ger­man state of Lower Sax­ony, was shocked to learn that a lead­ing mem­ber of the ex­trem­ist Na­tional Demo­cratic Party of Ger­many had booked two rooms at his Hol­i­day Inn.

His dilemma was how to get out of it legally. Mr Lohmeyer, a prom­i­nent mem­ber of the cen­tre-right Free Demo­cratic Party, de­vised a clever scheme: he wrote a pub­lic let­ter, telling NPD deputy na­tional chair­man Hol­ger Apfel and his comrade, Alexan­der Delle, that if they did not can­cel their book­ing he would do­nate all the fees to the Dres­den Syn­a­gogue.

In his let­ter, sent to lo­cal news­pa­pers, Mr Lohmeyer told Mr Apfel and Mr Delle to “con­sider it as a small con­tri­bu­tion to repa­ra­tions for the dam­ages that your like-minded fel­lows of the past in­flicted on the syn­a­gogue, and more im­por­tantly, on their for­mer con­gre­gants”. The strat­egy worked, and the book­ings were can­celled.

Mean­while, the party had other trou­bles in the for­mer West Ger­many. The NPD had can­celled its an­nual con­fer­ence, sched­uled for next week­end, be­cause their cho­sen venue re­fused to host them.

Ac­cord­ing to re­ports in the Ger­man me­dia, the NPD went to court to try to hold the Weser Ems Hall in Olden­burg, Lower Sax­ony, to its con­tract.

But the court ruled that the venue’s ten­ant could refuse ac­cess since only pub­lic in­sti­tu­tions are re­quired to make space avail­able to po­lit­i­cal par­ties.

While the hall is a mu­nic­i­pal build­ing, it is leased to a private ten­ant.

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