Videos and pictures posted on Social Media appear to show anti-refugees protesters attacking newly arrived refugees in the German town of Clausnitz, as police officers looked on unconcerned.
Since the refugee crisis started in Europe – due to the ongoing fighting in the Middle East, especially in Syria – Germany has received more refugees than any other European country. Totaling more than one million refugees entering Germany in 2015, the country’s Chancellor, Angela Merkel has urged other European countries to open their borders, too. Observers have predicted that more refugees will enter Germany this year, than in 2015.
In 2015, right-wing protesters took to the streets, protesting against the country’s pro-refugee stance. There have also been reports of counter protests from pro-refugee movements.
This latest incident of refugees coming under attack from right-wing protesters, is said to have happened on Thursday night. The BBC reported that the interior minister in the Clausnitz area has described the incident as “deeply shameful.”
One video showed the police watching on as angry protesters attacked tired refugees who had traveled many miles to reach Clausnitz. One video even showed the refugees’ bus being blocked on the road from entering the town.
Other videos also showed the police assaulting and pulling refugees from their bus, while the protesters can be heard in the background, shouting and chanting with joy, in support of what the police were doing.
According to the Revolution-News, a similar thing happened to refugees in the town of Heidenau last year. Anti-refugee protesters have announced on social media that they will prevent current refugees in the town from moving into their shelters.
The situation was said to have resulted in chaos, as there were not enough police officers to bring the incident under control. In 2015 again, it was reported that refugees were abused, and even tortured, at a police station in the city of Hannover. The police said they were investigating the incident, but nobody has been brought to trial over the allegations.
In this incident also, it has been alleged that the protesters had announced their intentions on social media before acting. Since the incident, the police in the area have come under intense criticism. The police chief in the area reportedly said on Facebook that there were only 30 policemen on duty during the incident, and that the police had to stay neutral during the attack.
— Peter Ahrens (@Peter_Ahrens) February 19, 2016
However, Micheal Funke, the mayor of Clausnitz has said that the protesters did not attack the refugees, but were only interested in finding out the identities of those entering the town. His account has been disputed by the video footage posted on social media.
Polizei Sachsen in #clausnitz … Umgang mit verängstigten Flüchtlingskindern. #kaltland
Posted by Frank Stollberg on Friday, February 19, 2016
Pro-refugee movements in Germany have also accused the police of showing bias, when dealing with them in demonstrations. Pro- activists said police harass their members, but when the anti-refugee movements demonstrate, the police are happy to support them by providing adequate security.
Even local media outlets in areas where protests and counter-protests on refugees take place are not left out in the chaos.
— Enough is Enough! (@enough14) February 17, 2016
Some local journalists have said that the police do not protect them from anti-refugee protester attacks when they demonstrate. Recently, a media outlet from the city of Leipzig announced that it will no longer cover an anti-refugee movement known as Legida, due to the attacks on its journalists by some of the more radical protesters.
Pro-refugee movements are therefore calling for a thorough investigation from the police high command, regarding the attitude of officers in handling refugee related issues.
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