Trouble in the EU Paradise: German Officials Hide Refugee Crimes, Fearing Backlash. (SP).
Authorities in Germany are deliberately keeping quiet about crimes occurring in refugee shelters, especially those involving brutality against women, as the country's policy of taking in asylum-seekers and providing them with sustenance and a monthly stipend has enraged many, who see the massive influx of young, mostly male Muslims as a threat.
There are no comprehensive statistics available reflecting the situation on criminal violations in refugee camps in the country, which is connected to federal structure of Germany, where each federal state's police force reports to its own interior ministry, Reuters explains. To confound matters further, the federal states are responsible for managing accommodation for asylum seekers.
Police union chief Rainer Wendt believes that state authorities have played down the problem of women being assaulted in refugee camps and shelters, Reuters reported on Tuesday.
“It is understandable that there is the desire to calm things down politically,” Wendt commented to Reuters, referring to the attempts of officials across the country to dispel 'rumors' regarding the dangers associated with taking in tens of thousands of migrants. “There is a lot of glossing over going on. But this doesn't represent reality,” he added.
Germany's Gewerkschaft der Polizei (Trade Union of the Police) along with women’s groups, however, have insisted that ignoring the problem would be counterproductive. Now, women rights activists have reportedly raised their voices and call for the creation of safe zones for migrant women, which would require gender segregation in residential areas.
Adult men account for almost three fourths of all asylum seekers in Germany; women and children account for the remaining fourth.
Women, who comprise the minority, often become victims of an increasing number of crimes, especially sexual assault, rape and, reportedly, forced prostitution, as a recent open letter signed by several charities suggests, according to Reuters.In Hamburg, eight cases of sexual assault in refugee camps have been confirmed this year; there the, Green Party's spokesperson for refugee affairs Tuelin Akkoc sees that right-wing political groups may use such reports to play the xenophobia card and try to turn public opinion against refugees.
“That's no reason to sweep this issue under the carpet. Right now is the time for the authorities to raise their voices in order to prevent extremist groups from dominating the debate,” Akkoc told Reuters.
For now, the general line for German officials is to wage war against far-right groups by giving speeches in public. The aim is to disperse rumors circulating all over the country and around the social media regarding how dangerous migrants from Middle East are. Read the full story here.
Related: Outcry of a young German policewoman - 'Male Muslims have no respect for female cops or Authority'.