In scenes chillingly reminiscent of the dark days of the Third Reich, refugees were subjected to abuse, firebombs and even attacked with baseball bats as opposition continues to spike against Angela Merkel’s open-door policy to migrants.
The violence came ahead of a potential flashpoint on Monday when the first 500 refugees out of a total of 750 are due to arrive in the small eastern village of Sumte that has just 102 residents. A local neo-Nazi councillor there is rubbing his hands with delight at the propaganda victory bureaucrats in Berlin appear to have handed him.
The weekend also saw huge rifts appear between Mrs. Merkel’s CDU party and her sister CSU party in Bavaria which is demanding a closure of Germany’s frontier with Austria to any more migrants. The violence of the weekend will only increase unease among her southern allies.
In Meerane in the eastern state of Saxony more than 100 right wingers hurled fireworks at asylum seekers and police as they attempted on Sunday to prevent refugees moving into local accommodation.
In Magdeburg on Sunday morning a mob of 30 people, some carrying baseball bats, chased three Syrians and beat them. Police moved in to protect the men and one neo-Nazi tried to club him to the ground before he was subdued with pepper spray.
The mob victims aged 26 and 35 all needed hospital treatment for cuts and bruises.
In Wismar in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – Angela Merkel’s home state – on Saturday< evening two Syrians aged 31 and 33 were attacked