According to a study commissioned by the Friedrich Ebert Foundation and published Tuesday, about 70% of Germans see right-wing extremism as a major threat.
The annual study asked 1,750 people about their political attitudes and perceptions.
It shows that right-wing extremism and climate change are perceived as the greatest threats by Germans at the moment, with climate change garnering slightly less concern than extremism.
The topic of migration, which still played a role after Germany accepted a large number of migrants after 2015, is only seen as a threat by 25% of people.
According to Beate Kuepper from the Niederrhein University, who contributed to the study, the center of society has been "scared and awakened" by a recent increase in right-wing terrorist attacks.
The study found that extreme-right views were only held by a very small percentage, and especially among less-educated people. While 3.2% of people with lower education adhered to extreme-right thinking, only 0.8% of people with a higher educational degree did.
The extreme-right sentiment was especially present in regions "where the AfD (Alternative for Germany) was successful in the 2017 parliamentary election" and where few foreigners live, the study found.
"The political mobilization is, however, statistically more significant than the low proportion of foreigners," the researchers wrote.
People who voted for the right-wing AfD also felt more politically powerless than voters of other parties. Overall, 28% of people believed they did not have any influence on what the government decides.
The researchers also found that people in Western Germany had less of a penchant for populist views than people in Eastern Germany. About 21% of people in Western Germany agreed with populist statements presented in the study, while 37% agreed in Eastern Germany.
Germany has seen several extreme-right terrorist attacks in recent years.
In June 2019, a right-wing extremist shot Walter Luebcke, head of government of the city of Kassel, who had been in favor of welcoming refugees.
In October of the same year, an armed attacker tried to enter a Synagogue in the city of Halle. When he did not succeed, he shot a passerby and a man inside a kebab shop.
In February 2020, a man killed nine people in Hanau, all of them with a migrant background or history, before killing his mother and himself.
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