There were more than 3,500 attacks on refugees in Germany in 2016, which amounts to nearly 10 attacks a day, a report released by the country’s interior ministry on Sunday said. At least 2,545 attacks on individual refugees were reported, while 988 attacks were reported on migrant housing in the country, Deutsche Welle reported.
Another 217 attacks were reported on refugee organisations and volunteers. At least 560 people including 43 children were injured in the violence, according to the report. The figures, which the interior ministry has called preliminary, were released in response to a parliamentary question, BBC reported.
The ministry said it strongly condemned the violence. “People who have fled their home country and seek protection in Germany have the right to expect safe shelter,” the statement said. Opposition party Die Linke’s MP Ulla Jelpke said that the German government was too focussed on a perceived security threat from migrants rather than concentrating on the far right.
“Do people have to die before the rightwing violence is considered a central domestic security problem and makes it to the top of the national policy agenda?” she asked. “Nazis are threatening refugees and therefore our democracy.”
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has been criticised by right-wing groups for her decision to take in thousands of refugees and migrants. She had said that the European Union cannot allow Greece to plunge into “chaos” by shutting European borders to refugees. She had also criticised people who protested against her decision. She had called the actions of protestors who shouted abuse at a bus full of refugees “repulsive” and “unjustifiable” in February 2016.
In 2015, Germany alone took in more than one million asylum seekers, fleeing from war-torn Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.