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Germany Neo Nazi March

Counter-protesters blocked a neo-Nazi march in Berlin


A group of counter-protesters prevented more than 500 far-right extremists from completing their march to the Berlin prison where high-ranking Nazi official Rudolf Hess died decades ago.

Police dressed in riot gear stood guard as neo-Nazis and an estimated 1,000 counter-protesters converged on the German capital.

The far-right protesters had planned to march to the site where Hess, who was sentenced to life in prison during the Nuremberg trials, committed suicide in 1987. Nazi sympathizers have long claimed he was killed and still organize annual marches in his honor. The far-right protesters, however, were forced to turn back after about 0.6 miles because of blockade created by counter-protesters.

Despite being re-routed, the neo-Nazis returned to Spandau prison for speeches. Their speeches were met with chants of "Nazis go home!" and "You lost the war!" from counter-protesters.

Police imposed restrictions on the march to ensure it did not turn violent like last week's white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia. Organizers were told they could not glorify Hess or the Nazi regime, carry weapons, drums or torches, and could bring only one flag for every 25 participants.

The neo-Nazi protesters were also screened for weapons, forbidden flags and tattoos showing symbols that have been banned in Germany, such as the swastika.

Overall, Berlin police said the protests remained peaceful.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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