While the second right-wing congress "Defender of Europe" in Upper Austria's Aistersheim Water Castle meets on Saturday, about 200 demonstrators gathered around 2:00 pm to protest the rally "Linz against Right" at the village square in Aistersheim. Many of them came with two buses from Linz and Vienna, many onlookers from the town mingled despite the cold, 150 police made sure that the congress with its approximately 600 participants was not disturbed.
According to police spokesman David Furtner were since the morning about 30 black masked persons in the 890-soul community on the way. Before the rally, several demonstrators had gained access to the parking lot opposite the castle and there fired bangers. That had scared the approximately 600 participants in the congress, but nothing was damaged, it was said.
Shortly before the beginning of the rally a black block consisting of a few dozen people marched slogans and "against the racist normal state" on a banner the place. "Lads abolish you" and "Death to Fascism – Our rebellion is justified" were further protest messages.
"Grannies vs. Right"
Even the "Grannies against right "were at least the signs for strong represented. Willi Mernyi, chairman of the Mauthausen Committee Austria, spoke on the stage.
Graz Vice-Mayor and AfD-man
Inside the castle was in the morning u.a. the vice-mayor of Graz, FPÖ Vice-mayor Mario Eustacchio, who, according to the Twitter account of the "Defender of Europe", thought about the "multiplication rate of immigrants", which "exceeds that of the autochthonous population" many times over. Also among the speakers was Andre Poggenburg from the AfD Saxony-Anhalt, who described the EU as the "pernicious disease of Europe".
On Twitter, the "Defenders of Europe" reported on "Color bombs and shots" at the publishing house of Info-Direkt in the night on Saturday. The police confirmed a property damage to the farm through red and black color bags. The vice-mayor of Linz, Detlef Wimmer (FPÖ), saw in a press release a "particularly reprehensible offense" by "left-wing extremists". The police spoke of "unknown perpetrators."
The Aistersheim Parish Council invited to "Word of God's celebration of peace, tolerance, and humanity" at 7:00 pm, after the end of the congress and protest rally at 6:00 pm. There will also be a sea of lights in front of the church, said Mayor Rudolf Riener (ÖVP).
The situation is different than in 2016 at the first right-hand congress in Linz, when officially 1,800 people demonstrated against the event, so Furtner. Since the location is a castle with moat, only the access roads must be secured, the space ban remains relatively small.
At the first edition in 2016 in the Linzer Redoutensäle today's Interior Minister Herbert Kickl (FPÖ) was a speaker.
right-wing extremists Magazine "Info-Direkt" is organizer
The organizer is the magazine "Info-Direkt", clbadified as a far-right by the Documentation Archive of the Austrian Resistance. According to the alliance "Linz gegen rechts", the premises in the moated castle have been leased by the fraternity Arminia Chernivtsi, who acts as the "link between right-wing extremism on the street and the FPÖ" as well as the "new right", which includes the radical right-wing identity movement.  Among the announced speakers and participants, critics see not only right-wing extremists and people related to the FPÖ, but also conspiracy theorists and those with overthrow attempts, which would also be under observation of the German constitution protection. On the homepage of the organizers it says: "The time in which we stood idly by the side of the road and let the social change pbad us by is over."