Christian Refugees In Germany Experience Harassment, Persecution Due to Their Faith

photo credit: Alexander Koerner, Getty Images
photo credit: Alexander Koerner, Getty Images

An estimated one million refugees are now living in Germany. Taking in so many refugees has posed some serious challenges for the country. One problem which had been ignored until recently is the increase in aggression and violence towards Christians in the refugee hostels. For this reason, Open Doors carried out a survey of Christian refugees in temporary accommodations in Germany who had experienced persecution on the grounds of faith. These were put into a report entitled Religiously motivated attacks on Christian refugees in Germany, consisting of 231 interviews carried out among refugees in a variety of locations in Germany over the last two months.

Thomas Muller, an Open Doors persecution analyst, said, “Christian refugees from many different countries are trying and failing to find safety in Europe, and it is likely that the report only shows the tip of the iceberg. It is clear that many Christian refugees – especially those who are converts to the Christian faith – live in fear of persecution from Muslim refugees who make up the majority of residents in the refugee hostels set up throughout Europe. It is sobering to hear persecuted Christians telling a Western country that they recognize the very same persecution patterns in operation as in their home countries.”

HARASSMENT AND PERSECUTION

The Christian refugees involved in the survey indicated that they had suffered from persecution both at the hands of fellow refugees and through hostel security staff. Some 75% stated that this had happened repeatedly. Persecution was suffered in the following ways (with the number of people affected in brackets):

  • Insults (96)
  • Bodily harm (86)
  • Death threats – also towards family (73)
  • Very loud religious music or prayer (62)

In addition there were physical attacks in the form of punches, spitting, pushing and sexual abuse.

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SOURCE: Open Doors