Anti-Immigrant Protests Grow as Refugees Flood Europe

Some ultra-conservative European protesters want to ban refugees, who they see as invaders.
9:49 | 12/22/15

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Transcript for Anti-Immigrant Protests Grow as Refugees Flood Europe
While the debate over Muslim refugees dominates much of the political rhetoric at home it pales in comparison to the dark backlash spread across Europe. Tense protests, street brawls, arson attacks. What does it mean for the thousands of refugees caught up in a personal purgatory? Here's my "Nightline" coanchor Dan Harris. We want a Europe free from fear! Free from terrorists! Reporter: There is something unsettling about standing in a square once named after Adolf hitler and listening to thousands of Germans chant nationalist slogans. What they're chanting now is "Traitors of the people." They're referring to the leaders of Germany who are allowing all these refugees in. Germany has just registered its 1 millionth refuji. And these people want to send them home. This continent is at a boiling point. While the debate over Muslim refugees rages in America, we're traveling across Europe where the far right is turning angry rhetoric -- The next terrorist attack in Europe -- Reporter: Into reality. We want Sweden to stay Swedish. Reporter: Fueled by a seemingly endless river of refugees as well as by the Isis attacks in Paris. At least one attacker posing as a refugee -- Reporter:ultra-conservative, anti-immigrant parties or the raise. Caught in the crosshairs, the migrants. Many of them escaping war Zones only to now be confronted with a wave of assaults and arson attacks. In Germany, the most provocative anti-refugee movement is called pegida. And it's led by this man. Mutz Bachmann. Recently this picture of him apparently mask raiding as hitler surfaced in the media. He insists it was photoshopped. We are for a Christian jewish culture. This is the culture we have in Europe. We don't have Islam culture here. There's no room for another religion? Islam isn't a religion. It's an ideology. And fascist ideology. Reporter: This is a chant with ominous historical overtones. They're chanting "Liar press." This is a chant that the nazis used to use. But to my surprise the people aren't stereotypical skinheads. They seem like regular folks who are just scared. With some people living with Islam it's okay, but no so much. Reporter: Just 100 yards away from the pegida rally there is a much smaller rally of anti-pegida protesters. Your critics say that your rhetoric is inspiring violence against the refugees. Okay. If they say it, okay. But it isn't. This is going to be hard to contain. The police are moving the counter protesters away but the pegida folks are occupying the high ground. Minor skirmishes like this are just a foretaste of what Bachmann says lies ahead. The outcome is going to be civil war in Europe. Civil war in Europe? Civil war in Europe. This is going to be the outcome. Reporter: The next morning we head two hours north to meet a young man who finds himself in the middle of this potential war. A young man we happen to know quite well. I'm from Syria, aleppo. Reporter: We met 21-year-old Ali in September in Turkey. Hello. Reporter: We followed him and his friends as they made the 2,000-mile journey, attempting perilous border crossings in the dead of night -- We're right on the border. Reporter: All the while with their eyes on the prize -- In Germany. We're going to stop in Germany. Reporter: Germany. What kind of life do you think you'll have? A good life. Simple life. Reporter: The three months later the easy, simple life he imagined in Germany is decidedly more complex. This is pretty far removed. From anything. Hello. Hello. Nice to see you. How are you? It's been a long time. Reporter: He's clearly relieved to see familiar faces here in this remote corner of east Germany where he's been placed by the government without anybody he knows. When you walk through the village, do people say hello to you? No. No? No. They look at you strange. Like this. And they will go -- Reporter: He tells us he spends most of his time at this hotel for refugees. This is our theater. She's perfect. Reporter: He's trying to learn German while he waits for a temporary residency card. He says he's keenly aware that many people are suspicious of him. They think we are terrorists. That's why they are scared from us. They must to understand us. Because the people, they are coming from Syria, they are running, running from everything. So they're not coming here to make trouble, they're coming here to survive? Of course, they want peace. They don't want any problems. They don't want to hear any shotguns. They don't want to hear any bombs coming on their houses. Thank you, good luck. Take care of you, Dan. Reporter: I almost feel badly leaving him. But we have to head north to Sweden where in a country that famously promised asylum to any Syrian refugee who could get there, a surprising backlash is brewing. A party called the Sweden democrats, led by youthful, energetic nationalists, is surging in popularity. We are arriving in Sweden, famously one of the most welcoming and open countries in all Europe. Even here the sheer number of refugees arriving on the shores is testing the limits of a so-called humanitarian super power. Reporter: Recently the deputy prime minister choked up when she found herself forced to announce that the country must renege on its open-door promise. We saw right away, police now forcing refugees to register at the border. On this train they found some people who didn't have the right papers. Clearly refugees. And they're being taken away. Reporter: But for the young leaders of the Sweden democrats, this is not enough. They want to stop these people from coming in the first place. The party recently released this ad aimed at anyone contemplating making the journey. This is a party said to have roots in the neo nazi movement that has now turned from shaved heads and tattoos to suits and ties. Producing videos full of images of an ideal Sweden. This woman is actually a spokesperson for the party's youth group, linia Cortes. The biggest mistake in migrant policy have been we have received too many in such short time and this has resulted in a segregated country. One of the members of your party said he doesn't think there should be mosques in Sweden. Do you agree? We do believe that everyone has the right to practice their religion. And all the muslims in Sweden has the right to do that. But maybe not in a mosque. Isn't that maybe a little unwelcoming or closed-minded? No. I don't think so. We still believe that everyone should have the right to practice their religion. But only in a building that you think fits in? Yeah. Reporter: The complicated part of this story is that the far right is correct that the refugee influx is creating unprecedented issues. Mass brawls at overcrowded refugee centers. This is police, stop it now! Reporter: Runaway costs. And grave security concerns. But the further you go into the darker pockets of the anti-refugee movement, the more you realize the only solution some of these people may find acceptable is racial and religious purity. If it was up to you guys Sweden would be 100% white? Yes. Refugees living in Stockholm, you are not welcome here, go home now. Reporter: On our last night we meet perhaps the most extreme people of our entire journey. We have to show them that the people don't want them here. We want to stop the invasion. Reporter: A group called no nordic youth. I think you have to burn it down at the beginning. I think it's going to be worse. A lot worse. Reporter: The question isn't whether Europe is changing. It already has. The question is whether conflict is now going to be a permanent part of this new world. Do you think there will ever be a time when violence is justified? Yeah, of course. But definitely believe civil war will be inevitable. If something doesn't change. Reporter: For "Nightline," this is Dan Harris in Stockholm, Sweden.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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