German populist leader Alice Weidel allegedly called Chancellor Angela Merkel a “pig” while describing the country as “overrun” by Arabs in an email leaked two weeks before the general election.
Weidel is one of two leading candidates for the Alternative for Germany (AfD). Up until a Sunday article in Welt am Sonntag, she was widely considered a moderate voice for a party often accused of racism.
Welt claims an email from 2013 was forwarded to the newsroom by one of Weidel’s former associates. Weidel reportedly describes Merkel and the government as “pigs who are nothing other than puppets of the allied powers. It is their task to keep the German people down by creating civil war in urban areas by flooding them with foreigners.”
The email goes on to call the government “enemies of the constitution” for allowing migrants into the country.
“The reason that we are being overrun by culturally foreign races like Arabs, Sinti and Roma is that the middle class is being systematically destroyed by our leaders, who are enemies of the constitution,” Weidel allegedly said. “These pigs are nothing other than marionettes of the victorious powers of the second world war, whose task it is to keep down the German people.”
Weidel firmly denies she ever wrote the email and AfD accused Welt of running a smear campaign against the party. The newspaper says it received a “solemn oath” from the person who forwarded the email.
Establishment politicians used the email to condemn AfD as “far-right radicals.”
“To spread such hatred in society 60 years later deserves a clear answer — that has nothing to do with conservatism,” said Armin Laschet, a senior member of Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union, according to The Local. “These people are far-right radicals and they don’t belong in the parliament.”
AfD is on the verge of making parliament for the first time in the Sept. 24 election. Polls suggest AfD could finish third and become the largest opposition party to Merkel’s coalition.