"There are still limits in the political battle of ideas", Justice Minister Heiko Mass said on Tuesday after a march by anti-Islam group Pegida in Dresden on Monday night.

"All political parties should distance themselves clearly from these protests", Maas told Spiegel.

"We can't be silent if a xenophobic atmosphere is being built on the backs on people who have already lost everything and come to us looking for help," he added, referring to the fact that Germany's welcoming of large numbers of refugees has sparked many recent demonstrations.

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