Christian migrants are “frequently” being injured and suffer death threats by Muslims in German asylum centres, an Orthodox priest has warned. He has called on the government to intervene to ensure the safety of Christians, many of whom are now avoiding the centres entirely.
Hegumen Daniil, a superior of the St George the Victorious Monastery in Gotschendorf, Germany has written to the Federal Minister for Special Affairs Peter Altmaier to highlight the persecution of Christians within Germany, Christian Today has reported.
“Christian refugees from Syria, Eritrea and other countries are exposed to humiliation, manhunt and brutal harassment at the camps for refugees by Muslim neighbours,” he wrote.
“The cases when humiliation comes to injuries and threats of death are frequent.”
The plight of migrant Christians living within the centres is already well understood – in September Prime Minister Bodo Ramelow of the state of Thuringia, one of the central cheerleaders for a multicultural Germany, was forced to enact a policy of segregating different cultures upon arrival in his state.
Said, a Christian who fled persecution in his native country told Die Welt: “In Iran, the Revolutionary Guards have arrested my brother in a house church. I fled the Iranian intelligence, because I thought in Germany I can finally live freely according to my religion.
“But I can not openly admit that I am a Christian in my home for asylum seekers. I will be threatened.”
It appears that little progress is being made in protecting the Christians, as many are still suffering brutal attacks and some have even returned to the Middle East.
Daniil wrote: “Many Christians who came from the Middle East are suffering from such a strong harassment that they want to come back home, because their situation there seems to them a lesser evil as compared to the circumstances at German refugee accommodation centers.”
Others, particularly converts from Islam who face an increased threat of violent attacks, have taken to sleeping outside the centres rather than access their food and shelter, he said.
As a result, Daniil has renewed the call for the authorities to provide protection for minority groups including Christians and Yazidis within the asylum centres.
“We ask you to exert the necessary pressure to ensure the observation of German law at the German centres for asylum seekers,” he said, “and while this remains impossible to fully implement, to accept the proposals by the clergy of different Christian confessions in Germany and ensure so that the Christians will be accommodated separately from the Muslims.”
Meanwhile a British Home Office Minister has told a Catholic Peer that the government will not discriminate on grounds of religion when helping refugees from Iraq and Syria.
Lord Alton wrote to both the Home Office and the Prime Minister expressing concern over the government’s policy of taking in Muslims from “formal camps” along the border of Syria while ignoring displaced Christians — most of whom are not living in such camps thanks to the threat of persecution — and cited the government’s willingness to prioritise gay people as a vulnerable group. A “total annihilation” of Christians was underway in the region, he said.
Home Office Minister Lord Bates responded to his pleas with a letter informing him that the government would not “discriminate” on the grounds of religion. The Prime Minister, meanwhile, is yet to reply.