German gig shut down by police after crowd chants Nazi slogan ‘sieg heil’
German police have shut down a far-right rock concert after the crowd started chanting the Nazi slogan “sieg heil” which means “hail victory”.
Several hundred people attended the concert in the small eastern town of Ostritz in the state of Saxony on Saturday which featured two bands from “the right-wing scene”, Goerlitz police said.
At 11.20pm shouts of “sieg heil” were heard coming from the venue by police stationed outside.
The Nazi slogan, which was used at political rallies in Nazi Germany, is illegal in the country, as well as Poland, Slovakia and Austria.
Officers halted the gig after hearing the chant and managed to empty the building shortly after 1am on Sunday.
Several witnesses also reported hearing the chants.
A federal investigation has now been opened, police added.
Under German law anybody using any form of Nazi slogan, in written form, vocally or physically saluting, can be imprisoned for up to three years.
The town of Ostritz, near the border with Poland, regularly hosts controversial far-right concerts.
Last April, hundreds of neo-Nazis gathered in the remote town for a festival timed to coincide with Adolf Hitler’s birthday.
There is a growing concern in Germany that the rise of the anti-Islam, anti-immigrant Alternative for Germany (AfD) party in recent years has emboldened far-right and neo-Nazi supporters.
In August the fatal stabbing of a Cuban-German man allegedly by three asylum seekers in the city of Chemnitz, also in Saxony, triggered far-right protests where some performed the Hitler salute.
A 34-year-old man was jailed for five months for making the illegal greeting.
In the first half of 2018, 131 neo-Nazi music events were organised in Germany, attracting 13,000 visitors, according to government statistics.