Far-Right Marchers in Warsaw Chant 'Jews Out of Poland'

The far-right march in Warsaw Poland Saturday Nov. 13 2017

An estimated 60,000 people participated in the "March of Independence", an annual event organized by far-right groups in Poland that attracted many more people than previous year, including some from other countries. "It is an important message worth remembering and reinforcing". As of 2010, there were some 3,200 Jews living in Poland.

One large banner read "Deus Vult" in Gothic lettering. In recent years, it has been used by the radical right to show hostility to Islam.

The European Commission on Wednesday aired "serious concerns" over proposals by President Andrzej Duda to overhaul courts in Poland, signalling it would not back down in a dispute that has tarnished the reputation of the former communist country.

He said it makes no difference if a person's father was "German, Jewish, Belarusian, Russian, or whatever".

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He also said the racist slogans could have been a "provocation" by "those who want to harm Poland", without specifying who he had in mind. Faced with European Union pressure and mass street protests in Poland against the changes, Duda - who hails from PiS himself - unexpectedly blocked two of the government's judiciary reforms in July. "For Poles, who differ in their opinions but who share the same values like freedom, like allegiance to their Independent Homeland, the march was a big occasion to celebrate", the Polish Foreign Ministry said. On Sunday night its Foreign Ministry said that the event was a unsafe "parade of extremist and racist elements". "History teaches us that we must act against hatred and racism as quickly and as determinedly as possibly", the ministry stated.

Agnieszka Markiewicz, director of Warsaw office of the American Jewish Committee, a global Jewish advocacy group, said the holiday "was seriously marred by hateful, far-right throngs that threaten the core values of Poland and its standing overseas". "The growth of xenophobic nationalism in Poland is becoming more unsafe, and we urge the government to condemn unequivocally the phenomenon and take appropriate action to counter it". In a really in front of Warsaw city hall they chanted "Warsaw free from fascism!"

Poland's president has a role in approving new legislation and Kaczynski has therefore held numerous meetings with Duda since then to break the stalemate.

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