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German police deploy over 1,000 officers at far-right demonstration

German police called in more than 1,000 officers in an attempt to prevent violence during a far-right protest in the eastern town of Koethen on Sunday.

News agency DPA reported that water cannon and mounted police were on hand to keep the peace between far-right groups and counter-protesters.

Far-right organisations, including the anti-Islam group Pegida, say they plan to protest about the death of a 22-year-old German who died after a dispute with two migrants a week ago. Two Afghan men, ages 18 and 20, have been arrested.

Authorities say the man had severe chronic heart disease and an autopsy showed he suffered a cardiac arrest after being punched in the face.

The Anhalt University of Applied Sciences in Koethen warned students to be aware of “potentially violent demonstrations”.

Germany has recently seen the most violent far-right protests in decades, which began in the eastern city of Chemnitz after the fatal stabbing of a German man in August that has been blamed on two migrants.

The protests have reignited a heated debate about Chancellor Angela Merkel’s 2015 decision to open the country’s borders to more than a million refugees.

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