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– Twenty-First Century Crusades?
tension and backlash against Muslims in Europe
German police 'should shoot at migrants', populist politician says
German police should "if necessary" shoot at migrants seeking to enter
the country illegally, the leader of a right-wing populist party has
Frauke Petry, head of the eurosceptic Alternativ fuer Deutschland (AfD)
party, told a regional newspaper: "I don't want this either. But the use
of armed force is there as a last resort."
Her comments were condemned by leftwing parties and by the German police
More than 1.1 million migrants arrived in Germany last year.
Also on Saturday, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said most migrants
from Syria and Iraq would go home once the wars in their countries had
She told a conference of her centre-right CDU party that tougher
measures adopted last week should reduce the influx of migrants, but a
European solution was still needed.
Police must stop migrants crossing illegally from Austria, Ms Petry told
the Mannheimer Morgen newspaper (in German), and "if necessary" use
"That is what the law says," she added.
A prominent member of the centre-left Social Democrats, Thomas Oppermann,
said: "The last German politician under whom refugees were shot at was
Erich Honecker" - the leader of Communist East Germany.
Germany's police union, the Gewerkschaft der Polizei, said (in German)
officers would never shoot at migrants.
It said Ms Petry's comments revealed a radical and inhumane mentality.
The number of attacks on refugee accommodation in Germany rose to 1,005
last year - five times more than in 2014.
A note on terminology: The BBC uses the term migrant to refer to all
people on the move who have yet to complete the legal process of
claiming asylum. This group includes people fleeing war-torn countries
such as Syria, who are likely to be granted refugee status, as well as
people who are seeking jobs and better lives, who governments are likely
to rule are economic migrants.