Germany reports rise in attacks against refugee shelters

Germany reports rise in attacks against refugee shelters

1,248 refugees and asylum seekers were targeted with verbal and physical violence

BERLIN (AA) - Germany registered 121 attacks against refugee shelters last year, marking an upward trend for the first time since 2015, authorities said on Thursday.

The country saw a 73% increase in such attacks in 2022 when compared to the previous year, according to figures by the Interior Ministry.

At least 1,248 refugees and asylum seekers were also targeted with verbal and physical violence outside the refugee shelters, the ministry said in response to a parliamentary question.

Left Party lawmaker Clara Bunger said that the figures were worrying and called for stronger measures against the far-right groups.

“This should put us on high alert, because the number of attacks has increased again after so many years. Refugees who seek safety and protection here are terrified,” she told Neue Osnabrucker Zeitung daily.

Germany took in more than 1.2 million refugees in 2022. The vast majority of them were Ukrainians who fled their homes due to the war.

At the height of the refugee crisis in 2015, Germany welcomed more than 1 million refugees, many of them were Syrians escaping the country’s civil war.

The country witnessed growing xenophobia and anti-migrant hatred at that time, fueled by the propaganda of neo-Nazi groups and the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party.

In 2015, more than 1,000 refugee shelters were attacked across the country. Since then, the figure was declining year by year, and it was the lowest in 2021, with 70 reported attacks.

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