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Leipzig Violence: Clashes in German City Over Jail Term for Woman Who Attacked Neo-nazis

Left-wing protesters and police have clashed for a second night over a jail term given to a woman convicted of vigilante attacks on neo-Nazis.

Demonstrators in the eastern city of Leipzig set up road blocks, lit fires and threw stones at officers, police said.

Lina E was sentenced to five years in jail, but released pending an appeal as she had been detained since 2020.

The protest in the city, where Lina E had studied, had earlier been banned.

A police spokesman said around 1,500 people turned up anyway, claiming around a third of those were “prone to violence”, the Reuters news agency reports.

Saturday’s violence followed similar scenes the previous night, when several hundred people lit bonfires in the street and thrown stones from buildings onto police vehicles.

On Sunday police said about 50 officers had been hurt and 30 protesters arrested over the two nights.

Lina E was regarded as a leader of a far-left group responsible for carrying out a brutal campaign of violence against the extreme right over several years, including attacks with hammers, iron bars and baseball bats.

After Lina E was found guilty, there were far-left protests in several cities and police were targeted with bottles and fireworks and baseball bats.

Three men convicted alongside her were also given jail sentences on Wednesday.

Other Germans were angered by the decision to release Lina E, after two-and-a-half years in custody – believing the decision implies violence against the extreme right is acceptable.

She is said to be unwell and has had to hand in her identity card and passport while she waits for the result of her appeal.

Lina E. (C), her lawyers Erkan Zünbül (2ndL) and a other defendant (R) are seen in the courtroom at the higher regional court in Dresden, eastern Germany, on May 31, 2023

Source : BBC