Slight decrease in attacks against refugees in Germany

The number of attacks against refugees and refugee homes in Germany in the first half of the year decreased slightly, new figures show.

Data from the interior ministry in response to a question from the far-left Die Linke party show that within the first six months of the year, there were 627 attacks on refugees’ outside shelters, 77 attacks on refugee homes and 120 people were injured in these incidents, according to publishing group Funke Mediengruppe. This is a slight decrease from the same time period last year when authorities recorded 642 attacks on asylum seekers outside shelters, 153 attacks on refugee shelters and 123 people were injured, German media report.

The reported attacks include severe arson, property damage, dangerous bodily harm, incitement of hatred and violations of weapons laws.

In all of 2017, authorities recorded more than 2,200 such attacks on refugees and refugee homes, with more than 3,500 such reports in 2016.

Die Linke’s domestic policy spokeswoman Ulla Jelpke said though she was “generally pleased” that the number of attacks so far this year has gone down, the number recorded was still “intolerable” and indicative of the state of “everyday racism and right-wing violence.”

She laid blame on the far-right Alternative for Germany party, who she accused of encouraging hatred of refugees in the German parliament. But she also placed blame on conservative Interior Minister Horst Seehofer’s push for tougher asylum and border policies, which set him on a collision course with Chancellor Angela Merkel earlier this summer and threatened the stability of the coalition government.

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