German mayor says schoolgirls shouldn't walk near refugee center to avoid sexual harassment (VIDEO)
The Bad Schlema town hall meeting turned sour after a grandfather confronted Mayor Jens Müller about young schoolgirls who have been harassed by asylum seekers from the windows of the town's refugee shelter. He asked Müller what would happen in the summer, when the girls are wearing less clothing.
“That's easy, just don't provoke them and don't walk in these areas,” said Müller, a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democratic Union party.
That response was met with outrage from residents, with one person calling for Müller to step down.
“You're not allowed to walk in your own city anymore! Go home, boy! Who the hell elected you?” a man shouted behind a camera filming the event. “Boy oh boy, you've got some nerve,” he added.
Another can be heard sarcastically saying, “Yeah, let's all keep a 1-meter distance! So easy!”
The mayor then called on residents to “calm down” before continuing his controversial statements.
“Well, it's technically not necessary for the girls to walk there. There are alternative routes for going to school,” Müller said.
The crowd became fired up once again, with one person responding: “It doesn't f***ing matter if there are other routes!”
But the mayor didn't stop there. He went on to remind the residents that sexual harassment also takes place among Germans.
“Do you think this doesn't exist among Germans?” he said.
One man responded “That has nothing to do with this! Germans go to prison for this...but they [migrants] don't go to prison!”
Seemingly uninterested in the man's statement, the mayor simply responded with “Next question please.”
Prior to the event, a demonstration of around 100 people gathered outside the meeting hall with signs reading “Merkel must go.” It follows a recent poll which revealed that 40 percent of Germans want Merkel to leave office over her refugee policy.
Bad Schlema, a town of 5,500 residents, has so far taken in 85 refugees. The town is in Saxony, not far from Dresden.
Sexual harassment among refugees has become a hot topic in Germany, after a string of assaults took place in Cologne on New Year's Eve, most of which were committed by migrants.
Violence has carried on into the New Year, with two elderly passengers attacked on the Munich Metro over the weekend by a group of men believed to be migrants. The group became violent when the elderly men tried to protect a woman from being harassed.
In an effort to teach refugees about ‘Germany and its People’, an educational guide was released about common customs – including how to treat women and girls. However, the cartoon guide was mocked by users on Twitter.
Germany has accepted more refugees than any other country in Europe, taking in 1.1 million in 2015. Merkel announced an open-door policy for asylum seekers fleeing war and persecution.
Europe continues to face the worst refugee crisis since World War II, with the numbers of new arrivals expected to grow this year. Most of the refugees are arriving from Syria, where a civil war has killed 250,000 people and displaced more than 12 million since 2011, according to UN figures.