Martin Sellner (2019)
|Alma mater||University of Vienna|
Martin Sellner (born 8 January 1989) is an Austrian Neue Rechte activist, leader of the Identitäre Bewegung Österreichs (IBÖ, Identitarian Movement of Austria), and a part of the alt-right movement.
Sellner was raised outside of Vienna. He became involved in nationalist politics as a teenager, being part of Austria's neo-Nazi scene. As of 2016, Sellner is studying philosophy and law in Vienna.
In 2008, he helped leading Austrian neo-Nazis hinder liberal demonstrations and made pilgrimages to memorial services for Wehrmacht soldiers. As of 2016, he said that he had broken with neo-Nazism, and that the rising popularity of Nazism is a failure of society.
In April 2016, he disrupted a theatre performance of Elfriede Jelinek's piece, Die Schutzbefohlenen (theatre performance with migrants seeking asylum), along with around 30 members of his organisation, spilling fake blood. The blood was meant to symbolize the "blood of Bataclan and Brussels".
In February 2017, Sellner was involved in a fight in a Vienna U-Bahn station where he used pepper spray on people he described as far-left activists. Since this incident, he has been banned from carrying weapons.
In March 2018, Sellner and his girlfriend Brittany Pettibone were denied entry to the United Kingdom at Luton Airport on the grounds that their presence in the United Kingdom was not conducive to the public good. Sellner intended to deliver an address at Speakers' Corner in London's Hyde Park. They were denied entry, detained for two days and deported.
On 25 March 2019 Sellner's apartment was searched by the Austrian police. His computer, mobile phone, all data storage devices and cash cards were confiscated on suspicion that he was a member of a terrorist organization; early in 2018 he had received a donation from Brenton Ahrrison Tarrant, the Australia-born suspect in the Christchurch mosque shootings in Christchurch, New Zealand. Sellner denied any involvement in the attacks. According to Sellner U.S. authorities canceled his permit to travel without a visa to the United States thus preventing him from visiting his American fiancée Brittany Pettibone.
ITV's documentary film investigation Undercover – The New British Far-Right claimed the existence of undercover footage of Sellner discussing contacts between Generation Identity and white supremacist groups in the United States, but stated that these contacts must be hidden due to public relations. The documentary claimed that Sellner stated that Jews were a problem in the 1920s and made references to the "Jewish question". Sellner also said that the domination of the American alt-right by the "Jewish question" is a "complete strategical and theoretical failure". It claimed he said he was an antisemite in his youth, and that his friends made offensive comments about the Holocaust. He supports the Great Replacement theory. Sellner responded by calling the documentary a "hit piece", and that the statements were taken out of context. In a statement released by Generation Identity and Sellner, they stated that the group wants to preserve European "ethno-cultural identity" and stated that the group has no hidden agendas.
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- "Canadian far-right activist Lauren Southern barred from Britain for anti-Muslim views". National Post. 12 March 2018. Retrieved 2 August 2018.
- Thorwarth, Katja: Hausdurchsuchung bei Martin Sellner wegen Spende von Christchurch-Attentäter. Frankfurter Rundschau. 26 March 2019
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- Oli Smith, "Anti-migrant march sparks violent scenes in Austria", Daily Express, 14 June 2016