An Austrian far-right leader with ties to American fascists sent a coffee invitation to a man now accused of murdering 50 Muslims in a Christchurch, New Zealand mosque.
Martin Sellner, the leader of the Austrian Identitarian Movement, received an approximately $1,700 donation from Brenton Tarrant in early 2018. Sellner and his movement push racist conspiracy theories, including one that Tarrant used as the title of his manifesto after he allegedly murdered 50 worshippers in March. After the financial ties were revealed, Sellner tried to distance himself from Tarrant. But Austrian and German news outlets reported this week that Sellner had exchanged emails with Tarrant until at least July 2018, and that both men invited each other to their respective countries.
The communications appear to have started after Tarrant made his donation, which was unusually large. Most donations to Sellner and his group “were in the area of two to three figures,” an Austrian official previously said of other donations. Tarrant’s four-figure donation prompted Sellner to write a thank-you note, which sparked a conversation.
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