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Germany's Rammstein facing calls to cancel Swiss concerts

AFP
AFP - [email protected]
Germany's Rammstein facing calls to cancel Swiss concerts
Till Lindemann, singer of German rock band Rammstein, is engulfed in flames as he performs at a Stockholm concert in the 90s. Lindemann currently faces multiple sexual assault allegations. Photo: Tobias ROSTLUND / SCANPIX SWEDEN / AFP

Women's rights groups and political organisations have demanded the cancellation of Rammstein's forthcoming concerts in Switzerland following multiple sexual assault allegations made against the German metal band's frontman.

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Rammstein are scheduled to play two sold-out gigs at the Wankdorf Stadium in the Swiss capital Bern on June 17th and 18th, as part of their current European tour.

Several women have come forward recently to claim they were drugged and recruited to engage in sexual activity with singer Till Lindemann, 60, at Rammstein after-show parties.

Lawyers representing Lindemann categorically denied the allegations on Thursday.

READ ALSO: Rammstein frontman denies sexual assault allegations

Young Socialists Switzerland (JS), the Social Democratic Party's youth movement, launched a petition urging the promoters to call off the Bern gigs.

"Maintaining the concerts means that the organiser is clearly behind Rammstein, which sends a very bad signal to those affected," the petition said.

"We ask the concert organiser Gadget ABC to draw the necessary conclusions in this situation, to cancel the Rammstein concerts in Bern and to refund the ticket price to the spectators in full."

Also backing the call were Brava, a non-governmental organisation against violence against women; feminist peace organisation CFD; and SP Frauen Schweiz, a progressive social democratic feminist movement.

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"These accusations of sexual assault must be taken seriously," said JS vice president Thomas Bruchez.

The only responsible thing to do in this context is to cancel the concerts," he told Switzerland's ATS news agency on Friday.

Blick newspaper reported that the Feminist Strike Collective Bern was considering possible action outside the stadium.

Rammstein, an industrial metal band founded in 1994, is known for grinding guitar riffs, taboo-breaking antics and theatrical stage shows heavy on pyrotechnics.

Their songs have dealt with subjects from cannibalism to necrophilia and the band name itself evokes the 1988 Ramstein air show disaster that killed 70 people and injured more than 1,000.

READ ALSO: German rockers Rammstein slammed over 'repulsive' Holocaust video clip

A young Irish woman posted on social media that she had been drugged and propositioned by Lindemann at a backstage party in Vilnius.

A wave of similar stories has since emerged recently through platforms such as Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

German newspaper Die Welt reported on Tuesday that Alena Makeeva, a Russian woman accused of recruiting young women to engage in sexual practices with Lindemann, had been banned from all further Rammstein concerts.

READ ALSO: Who are Rammstein and why are they so big in Germany?

 

 

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