Alternative for Germany Party members to meet with Russian Foreign Minister

Representatives of the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party will today meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Moscow. AfD

lavrov

Photo: RFE/RL

Representatives of the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party will today meet with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in Moscow.

AfD is a far-right, populist political party that currently occupies 89 of 709 seats in Germany’s directly elected Bundestag. The largest constituent party of the country’s 311-seat opposition bloc, AfD is ideologically rooted in German nationalism and Euroscepticism.

Lavrov and the MPs are expected to discuss the resumed construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline project as well as EU sanctions imposed on Russian officials in response to the poisoning of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny. Generally consistent with its pro-Moscow views, AfD has supported the completion of the pipeline project and has sought to downplay evidence showing that Navalny was poisoned by the Soviet-era chemical agent Novichok, which has also been used against other Russian dissidents in recent years.

Expect conversations today to be cordial but ultimately unlikely to sway Brussels and Washington from imposing future sanctions on Moscow for its hostile activities. If anything, expect Russia to use AfD alignment with Moscow to its benefit, in an effort to create the illusion that Germans are divided on the fairness of punishing Russia.

Wake up smarter with an assessment of the stories that will make headlines in the next 24 hours. Download The Daily Brief.