After the arrest of a 17-year-old male Afghan refugee suspected of raping and killing a 19-year-old German woman, government officials are trying to clamp down on bad talk about refugees and migrants.
German Vice-Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel reportedly told German press, “We must not allow this abhorrent act to be abused for rabble-rousing and conspiracy propaganda,” adding, “it is clear to everyone that refugees can commit equally terrible crimes as people born in Germany.”
“We will not allow incitement after such violent crimes, no matter who commits them,” Gabriel added.
Steffen Seibert, spokesman for German Chancellor Angela Merkel, called the act an “appalling crime,” but added, “We must not forget that we are talking about a possible act by one Afghan refugee, not a whole group of people who, like him, are Afghans and refugees.”
In the wake of the news that the suspect was an Afghan refugee, many took to social media to give a sarcastic “thank you” to Merkel, who opened Germany to refugees from the Middle East in 2015.
She now faces re-election, and right-wing parties like the Alternative for Germany (AfD) are pointing out the crime could have been prevented by more immigration restriction.
The head of a German police union spoke out as well, saying, “We wouldn’t have this victim, and so many others, if our country had been better prepared for the dangers that always go along with massive immigration.”
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