Thousands expected to rally across Europe for and against Pegida

The German city of Dresden was gearing up for major protests on Saturday staged by both sides of the asylum debate, as anti-migrant movement Pegida called on supporters to rally at locations across Europe.

In Dresden, where Pegida protests frequently attract thousands of supporters, police officers tasked with keeping rivalling camps apart were on high alert.

Police estimate that 25,000 people will take part in total and said that some of the protesters could turn violent.

Hundreds of asylum proponents had gathered in the eastern German city on Saturday afternoon, marching under the banner, "borderless solidarity."

Pegida, a German abbreviation for Patriotic Europeans against the Islamization of the West, has announced a day of international rallies against Muslims and migrants on Saturday.

The chain of protests began in Canberra, where 400 people marched towards the parliament building in the Australian capital, shouting Islamophobic slogans such as "We love bacon" and "Who the hell is Allah?"

Other cities hosting Pegida protests include Warsaw, Tallinn, Prague, Bratislava, Amsterdam and Birmingham.

Last update: Sat, 06/02/2016 - 14:12

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