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Treatment of Minorities

Treatment of Minorities Map of the resettlement of foreigners in Germany.

Xenophobia is gradually becoming a part of everyday life in Germany. According to the results of a sociological survey conducted by Forsa research institute, published on January 1, 2015, almost a third of Germans throughout the country support the anti-immigrant organization PEGIDA. More than 60% of Germans experience xenophobic feelings towards migrants. According to Amnesty International, 94% of Germans in 2015 believed that refugees should be helped to escape the war in third countries. Nevertheless, it is interesting that the overall level of anti-immigrant sentiment in Germany, and indeed in Europe as a whole, has significantly decreased (in Germany, by more than 10%). This is largely due to the explanatory work of representatives of the authorities and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. In all likelihood, the respondents' minds were divided into "migrants" and "Muslims", although among the refugees the majority are adherents of Islam. Moreover, there is a pattern that many of those who fear immigrants are at the same time ready to help them (and do).

Study conducted by TNS Research for the Spiegel magazine on December 10-11 showed that 34% of German citizens fear the increasing influence of Islam in the country and support the PEGIDA movement. The level of Islamophobia had grown from 24% in 2014 to 29% in 2015.

Anti-Semitism is also fairly common in Germany, including so-called “neo-anti-Semitism”, which masks behind “anti-Zionism”. The latter phenomenon is more common among the German youth. Surveys show that 23% of respondents share the classic anti-Semitic belief that Jews are controlling the world. 34% of respondents (40% of youth) compare Israeli politics towards Arabs to Nazi politics (30% in 2013). 28% said that Israeli policies made them more hostile towards Jewish people. 5% believe that Germany must support Arabs in the Israel-Palestine conflict, 15% say Germany must support Jews (9% among youth).

Anti-Semitic sentiments are common among German Muslims. On August 12, members of the Jewish community in Frankfurt were forced to leave the City Council for Religious Affairs after anti-Semitic and anti-Israeli remarks from their Muslim counterparts. Islamic Association stated that the Central Council of Jews in Germany exploits the problem of anti-Semitism in Europe to “distract from crimes committed by the Israeli government” . Young Muslims in Berlin have adopted sharp anti-Israeli and anti-Semitic views after the start of the Gaza conflict in July 2014.

However, in general, in 2015, in Germany, as in many other European countries, the overall level of anti-Semitism has declined (from 9% in 2014 to 5% in 2015).

Anti-Roma sentiments are also quite widespread in Germany. Moreover, the level of xenophobia of this type had increased from 34% in 2014 to 40% in 2015. Homophobic moods have also increased to 30% in 2015, which many associate with the influx of refugees from Islamic countries.

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