Hundreds of activists walked across the main streets in Lisbon protesting against far-right parties, organized by the Portuguese Nova Ordem Social. There were about 65 people from all over Europe, "the seats were empty, signaling the lack of popularity of the far-right in Portugal," as Reuters reports.
“It shouldn’t be acceptable in our country to authorize events which bring together, from various countries, movements which are xenophobic, racist and openly fascist,” Left Bloc lawmaker Isabel Pires said.
As the conference was happening, demonstrators carrying anti-Nazi posters marched in a protest backed by left-wing parties including the Communists and the Left Bloc, which support the ruling Socialists in parliament.
Portugal is one of the four European countries, where the far-right parties are not represented in the parliament.
The government, led by prime minister Antonio Costa, has been heavily criticized by protest organizers for allowing the conference, which brought together members of several European groups, including Germany’s Die Rechte and France’s Parti Nationaliste Francais.
“We didn’t want to be out of an international movement taking place in Europe,” Nova Ordem Social Leader Mario Machado stated on the sidelines of the conference. Machado has spent ten years in prison for crimes including racial discrimination.