Refugees’ human rights violated in deportations to Turkey

This video says about itself:

Protesting deportation to Turkey at the VIAL detention Center on Chios, Greece, April 3, 2016

18 April 2016

A video given to Human Rights Watch shows Shila Ahmadi wailing as about 15 riot police with helmets and shields approach. A group of men nearby starts chanting: “This is Europe, it’s a shame on you!” and “It’s not human rights!”

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:

Human rights violated by expulsions to Turkey

Today, 11:10

The first expulsion of migrants from Greece to Turkey was chaotic and violated human rights. So says Human Rights Watch after conversations with 12 friends of 19 Afghans who were returned on April 4 from the Greek island Chios to Turkey.

According to HRW, the migrants did not know they were deported, they had no idea where they were going and some were not allowed to bring personal belongings like backpacks and mobile phones.

A friend of three expelled Afghans told Human Rights Watch: “Ilias, Mohammad and Reza were told they had to register, they walked away happily and when they came out the police was waiting for them. If they had known that they would be deported, then they would have brought their bags, their papers and their money.”

Crying protest

According to HRW the group of 66 people was driven together in one building, where later that day a protest broke out. About 15 police officers with helmets and shields kept the group under control.

According to HRW policemen then tied the hands of the refugees behind their backs and they were then put into a police van. Jackets, bags, money and cell phones were not allowed to go along.

It seems that the Greek authorities were in a hurry to reach the number of deportees that had been agreed between the European Union and Turkey, HRW concludes.

According to numerous news sources, another disaster involving a refugee boat took place Monday in the Mediterranean Sea. Italian President Sergio Mattarella spoke of several hundred deaths, while German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier confirmed over 300. Somalia’s ambassador in Egypt told BBC Arabic that there were 400 deaths: here.

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) have now confirmed that a refugee boat went down earlier this week between the Libyan port of Tobruk and the Greek island of Crete. Both organisations, based on the testimony of 41 survivors, estimate that up to 500 refugees died in the disaster: here.

Hollande sheds crocodile tears over refugees in Lebanon visit: here.

United States drones kill Afghan civilians

This video from the USA says about itself:

U.S. Drone Strike Kills 17 Civilians, Including First Responders In Afghanistan

11 April 2016

American airstrikes in the southeastern Afghan province of Paktika killed at least 17 civilians, local officials and elders said on Thursday, differing from official American and Afghan claims that only militants had been killed…

Read more here and here and here.

Afghan Civilians Among 18 Killed In U.S. Strike On ISIS, Police Say: here.

USA: Could the outage of this classified computer system be behind a series of disastrous drone strikes?

7-year-old Afghan refugee boy saves fifteen lives

This music video from England is called The English Disco Lovers protest at M19 Refugees Welcome march central London 19th March 2016.

From Associated Press:

Boy’s trans-Atlantic text, fast police work save 15 migrants


April 8, 2016 11:48 AM EDT

LONDON — The text message from a young boy, writing in broken English on a no-frills cellphone, was frightening enough to set off a frantic, trans-Atlantic search that saved the lives of 15 migrants trapped in a locked truck in England.

The message flashed on the cellphone of volunteer Liz Clegg, who was attending a conference in New York: “I ned halp darivar no stap car no oksijan in the car no signal iam in the cantenar. Iam no jokan valla.” It was written by Ahmed, an Afghan boy of about 7, trying to say: “I need help. The driver won’t stop the car. No oxygen in the car. No signal. I’m in a container. I am not joking. I swear to God.”

In March, Clegg and others volunteering at a squalid migrant camp in Calais, France, had handed out hundreds of basic cellphones to children living there, programming in a number for them to text in a crisis.

She knew Ahmed wouldn’t text something like that if he wasn’t in danger. So she called Tanya Freedman, from the Help Refugees charity in London, to tell her the boy seemed to be suffocating.

Freedman called police in southeast England to tell them of the emergency. The police response was swift and effective, she said.

“I conveyed to them that it was a life-and-death situation,” Freedman told The Associated Press on Friday. “I had Ahmed’s number and the first thing they did was find an interpreter who spoke Pashto to talk to him. They called him and immediately they realized it was an emergency, and they were able to put a trace of his cellphone and find out he was in a lorry (truck) in Leicestershire.”

Kent Police said in a statement they received a call at 2:50 p.m. Thursday reporting that migrants were believed to be in danger in a truck, and that police established the truck was in Leicestershire. The information was given to police in Leicestershire, who quickly found the truck parked at a highway service station, broke into the back and freed 15 oxygen-starved migrants.

Only then did Freedman exhale: “It was absolutely nerve-wracking waiting to see if the police could find this boy in time to save his life,” she said.

Leicestershire Police said 14 migrants were detained on suspicion of entering Britain illegally, with their cases to be handled by immigration officials, and one man was arrested on suspicion of illegal trafficking.

Police said one child was placed in protective care. None involved gave his last name because he is a minor.

“I think it’s extraordinary that a 7-year-old boy knew his life was in danger and had the presence of mind to know what to do and give the right information and save himself and the others in the truck,” Freedman said. “We hope he’s getting the right kind of care.”

Praise for little Ahmed, Ms Clegg and Ms Freedman for helping to save human lives.

And praise for the British police for helping to save human lives. However, no praise at all for the British Cameron government, ordering police to arrest fourteen humans who fled the bloody war in Afghanistan, to which the British government contributed. Arresting them like they were murderers or rapists, instead of refugees from bloodshed.

European Union mass deportation of Afghan refugees: here.

US Afghan hospital bombing, six months later

This video from the USA says about itself:

White House Fighting Independent Investigation Of Hospital Bombing

7 October 2015

It’s been four days now since the US bombed a Doctors Without Borders hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan, and the calls for an independent investigation have only grown louder and more insistent in that time. Cenk Uygur and John Iadarola (Think Tank), hosts of the The Young Turks, break it down. Tell us what you think in the comment section below.

By Sophia Jones:

Afghans Haunted By U.S. Strikes On MSF Hospital Want The Truth, Not Money And Apologies

Six months after the attack that killed 42 men, women and children, the U.S. military’s lack of transparency is still hurting Afghans.

03/31/2016 03:24 pm ET | Updated 14 hours ago

ARWAN, Afghanistan — A bullet through the head didn’t kill 9-year-old Amina. Her father, Abdel Qadir, had managed to carry her limp body to the trauma hospital in Kunduz, praying that she would live.

But on Oct. 3, less than a week after surviving a firefight between Afghan forces and Taliban insurgents that had surrounded her home, Amina burned to death in a hospital bed as her father watched helplessly. Her last words were screamed in terrified pain.

“Father! Father!” she wailed as flames consumed her body, Abdel Qadir recalled, weeping.

It’s been nearly six months since a U.S. attack aircraft bombed the Médecins Sans Frontières trauma clinic where Amina was staying. Time has not yielded clarity — there still seem to be more questions than answers. And the U.S. military’s lack of transparency has only compounded people’s mistrust.

According to Gen. John Campbell, the top U.S. general in Afghanistan at the time, what happened in Kunduz was a “tragic but avoidable accident.” MSF, the international medical aid organization that ran the hospital, has described the assault as a potential war crime.

Amina and at least 41 other men, women and children perished in the attack on the clinic, which had been the only hospital of its kind providing free trauma care in northern Afghanistan. And while the bombing happened six months ago, the murky circumstances under which it occurred are still having a chilling effect on medical care in the area.

MSF has said it cannot make a decision about re-opening the trauma hospital until all parties to the conflict can ensure the safety of MSF staff, patients and medical facilities.

“We need assurances that we can work according to our core principles and to international law,” an MSF spokesperson told The WorldPost on Thursday. “Namely, that we can safely treat all people in need, no matter who they are, or for which side they fight.”

As of now, the clinic can only treat a small number of patients, many of them victims wounded in the Kunduz attack. This leaves many Afghans with no choice but to travel to the capital — a trip that can take hours, often via dangerous roads — to find free, high-quality emergency medical care.

Survivors of the Oct. 3 bombing describe a nightmarish scene. The first strike hit the intensive care unit. Doctors, some with severed limbs, bled out in front of colleagues. Others were gunned down as they ran for their lives. Patients died on the operating table mid-surgery. Those who were unable to run — like young Amina, a clever girl who loved computers — were incinerated.

The U.S. military has reportedly responded by reviewing its targeting process, re-training its forces on rules of engagement and disciplining more than a dozen service members — including officers and enlisted personnel, but not generals — who took part in the attack. The service members will not, however, face any criminal charges.

U.S. Central Command has not yet published its investigation into the attack, which is reported to be 3,000 pages or more. The investigation cannot go public until certain material has been redacted, according to Brig. Gen. Wilson Shoffner, chief spokesman for U.S. forces in Afghanistan, who spoke to The WorldPost in Kabul in late January.

The military has ignored multiple calls by MSF and other parties for a truly independent investigation by an outside group, arguing instead that fact-finding efforts carried out by military officers outside the chain of command in Afghanistan would be “thorough and unbiased.”

Basic details are still up for debate. The U.S. military insists the strikes went on for 29 minutes. MSF and survivors say the targeted assault dragged on for at least an hour.

And larger questions remain. …

According to U.S. military statements on the incident, a U.S. Special Forces commander called in the strike, carried out by a powerful AC-130 gunship, at the request of Afghan forces on the ground. U.S. forces did not have eyes on the target before calling in the strikes, the Associated Press reported in November.

They instead placed trust in their Afghan allies who had, just three months earlier, violated international law by raiding that same clinic, shooting in the air and attacking three staff members while allegedly searching for an unarmed, highly ranked al Qaeda patient.

The U.S. military has repeatedly insisted it would not knowingly target the MSF’s clinic, and has said it did not know it was shelling a hospital, even though the trauma center was on the military’s no-strike list and its exact coordinates were no mystery. MSF had sent the coordinates to U.S. forces and NATO allies as recently as Sept. 29 — four days before the bombing.

Frantic calls and texts during the attack from MSF to the Operation Resolute Support headquarters in Kabul proved futile. Thirty minutes after MSF’s initial call for help, at 2:19 a.m., someone at the NATO mission texted back, saying: “I’m sorry to hear that, I still do not know what happened.” When MSF warned that the death toll was growing, the person responded: “I’ll do my best, praying for you all.”

Campbell, the army general, has blamed a deadly combination of unfortunate events for the strike. U.S. forces misidentified the target and launched 69 minutes early without verifying whether the target was on a no-strike list. Technical glitches onboard the AC-130 meant troops could not send or receive electronic messages or video. The aircraft, forced beyond its normal orbit by a missile, could not accurately strike a target.

“Why did nobody take the decision to hold off and say that they weren’t sure?” said Guilhem Molinie, MSF’s representative in Afghanistan. “It questions the capacity of NATO in this country and many other armies to be indiscriminate in the way they conduct warfare and respect the Geneva Conventions.”

Afghan officials, including the acting governor of Kunduz, Hamdullah Danishi, insisted in the days after the bombing that the Taliban had used the compound to launch attacks on Afghan forces, a claim MSF fiercely rejects. …

A dozen MSF staff, surviving civilians, Kunduz residents and family members of patients told The WorldPost they saw no armed gunmen on the hospital grounds at any time before or during the strikes. The clinic had a strict no-weapons policy.

“It’s completely untrue that there were Taliban inside the hospital,” said Dr. Mohammad Omar, an MSF emergency room supervisor who survived the attack.

Just two days before the strikes, Carter Malkasian, a top adviser to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, reached out to MSF, asking whether there were Taliban “holed up” in the hospital. He was told that while there were no armed combatants inside the compound, there were indeed Taliban patients being treated. Malkasian declined a request by The WorldPost for more information.

MSF staff have, for years, treated people on all sides of the conflict, including patients believed to be high-ranking insurgents.

That leaves many Afghans and medical professionals wondering whether the presence of wounded but unarmed Taliban patients inside the clinic may have prompted the Oct. 3 strike.

The attack has raised concerns over the current U.S. role in Afghanistan, and questions about the presence of special forces now that the United States’ combat mission is formally over. American forces are primary in a “train, advise and assist” capacity, though it seems troops are still finding themselves in active combat situations.

The Kunduz attack is also yet another stain on the U.S. military’s reputation in Afghanistan. Survivors and family of people killed in the bombing still have no closure, no real explanation as to why the attack occurred. And there’s very little confidence among Afghans that such an “accident” won’t happen again.

“The Americans have access to good information,” Abdel Qadir said, sitting cross-legged on the floor of a guesthouse in Parwan, an Afghan city between Kabul and Kunduz, as rain pitter-pattered outside. “Why would they make this mistake?”

As with past combat incidents in Afghanistan and Iraq that led to civilian deaths, the U.S. military has made more than 100 condolence payments to family members of Kunduz victims, according to Shoffner. Some recipients say they’ve received around $6,000 or $7,000 each — the U.S.-determined price of life for a daughter, brother or father wrongfully killed.

A brother of one of the slain MSF doctors told The WorldPost that he refused the money, instead giving it to other families who needed it more. He said he learned of his brother’s death via Facebook, after someone posted a photo of ashes with the caption, “Here is the body of Dr. Osmani.”

But despite the U.S. military’s efforts to remedy the horrific event, Afghans whose lives have been torn apart by the attack demand something far more difficult to come by than scripted apologies and condolence payments — namely, the full truth.

“They killed so many civilians,” said one male Kunduz resident who lives close to the MSF compound. “Most of the people here, their ideas changed of the American people. The people are angry. The Americans have the technology and the information. They can see if there are armed people or not.”

“An apology is not enough,” continued the young man, who asked that his name not be published for security reasons. “I lost four friends — two doctors, one nurse and one student.”

An apology also means nothing to Omar, the ER doctor, who now lives in terror that such an attack will happen again. He’s far from the only one. The Italian-run Emergency Hospital in Lashkar Gah responded to the attack by building a bunker large enough to accommodate staff and patients.

Omar said he remembers the Oct. 3 bombing like it was yesterday. As the attack aircraft unleashed hell outside, the experienced ER doctor thought there was no way he would survive. He called his wife to say goodbye.

“She was crying,” Omar said solemnly. “It was the hardest moment of my life.”

Omar survived because he was in the clinic’s basement, where MSF staff had set up makeshift trauma stations in an attempt to save those they could.

When the sound of the attack aircraft finally died out, people scrambled out from the ruins of the hospital, plumes of smoke still rising as much of the compound burned.

Patients were loaded into ambulances that had come to collect the wounded. Some staff members, including foreigners, were whisked away to the airport. Many local staff had to fend for themselves, seeking shelter in nearby homes and hitching rides with helpful strangers.

But the dead remained. Amina’s body still lay in the ICU. Her parents weren’t able to collect her remains until days later.

“I couldn’t save her,” cried Abdel Qadir, gasping for breath between sobs. “I took her ashes, her skeleton, and gave them to my wife.”

Half a year after the fatal attack, Abdel Qadir is left with a wad of cash from the U.S. military. It does nothing to fix his broken heart. He remains haunted by a simple question: Why did his daughter have to die?

All he can do is pray for Amina, the daughter he couldn’t save twice.

Naiemullah Sangen contributed reporting from Parwan and Kabul.

British government deports child refugees to war zones

This video from Canada says about itself:

Syrian Children Experience Snow

19 January 2016

Snow is a new experience but fun in any language looks the same.

Unfortunately, not all refugee children have the luck of the children in this video (and if the previous Stephen Harper government in Canada would not have been defeated by the voters, then the children in the video might never have seen snow either.)

From daily The Independent in Britain:

Refugee crisis: Thousands of child asylum seekers deported back to war zones, Home Office admits

Exclusive: Hundreds sent back from UK to countries where Isis and Taliban are rampant

Maeve McClenaghan

Tuesday 9 February 2016 21:44 BST

Thousands of young people who sought refuge in Britain as unaccompanied child asylum-seekers have been deported to repressive regimes and countries partly controlled by Isis and the Taliban, the Home Office has admitted. Over the past nine years 2,748 young people – many of whom had spent formative years in the UK, forging friendships and going to school – have been returned to countries including Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Libya and Syria.

The figures were finally published by the Home Office minister James Brokenshire this week. Previous Home Office figures significantly understated the scale of the deportations.

The bulk of those deported – some 2,018 – were sent to Afghanistan, but around 60 young people have been deported to Iraq since 2014, the year Isis seized control of swathes of the country. The findings, which were triggered by questions from the Bureau of Investigative Journalism and the Labour MP Louise Haigh, raise serious concerns about what happens to child asylum-seekers when they turn 18, and at a time when Britain is being urged to help thousands of orphaned child refugees from Syria.

Unaccompanied child asylum-seekers arriving in the UK are given temporary leave to remain. But this expires when they become adults, at which point many are sent back to their home country – even if they have taken GCSEs and A-levels, integrated into British society and lost touch with their homeland. They often struggle to start new lives, because their Westernised mannerisms mean they are regarded with suspicion.

Ms Haigh said: “These shocking figures reveal the shameful reality behind our asylum system.

“Children who flee countries ravaged by war in the most appalling of circumstances are granted safe haven and build a life here in the UK, but at the age of 18 can be forced on to a flight and back to a dangerous country they have no links to and barely any memory of.

“With many more vulnerable young children due to arrive in the UK over the next five years the Government needs to answer serious questions and provide a cast-iron guarantee that vulnerable young people will not be sent back to war zones.”

She now plans to bring a parliamentary debate on the issue, while the Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron is to chair an emergency cross-party summit on 10 February to explore how Britain can support future intakes of child refugees.

Mr Farron said: “It is a sad state of affairs that the Government is stripping the protective blanket of safety we have offered these children on their 18th birthday. Many will have integrated into their communities.”

As he released the figures, Mr Brokenshire was forced to apologise for previously providing the Commons with inaccurate numbers in November that said just 1,040 former child refugees had been returned to Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Syria and Libya since 2007. He blamed the inaccurate data on “an error during the extraction process”.

Ms Haigh said: “Ministers have been basing their confident assurances on protecting these extremely vulnerable young people on a calamitous guesstimate.”

The Bureau of Investigative Journalism explored the cases of several Afghan teenagers last year as they battled deportation orders. Some who were returned claimed they had been left homeless, chased by the Taliban, kidnapped, ransomed and beaten.

The latest Home Office figures show that in 2015, 57 former child refugees were sent back to Afghanistan, where the Taliban still controls many districts. Removals to the country have now been temporarily halted as lawyers argue that the security situation is so unsafe that no one should be returned.

However, earlier this month lawyers for the Home Office argued in a Court of Appeal case that removals should continue. The judgment is expected imminently. The latest figures also show 657 former child refugees have been returned to Iraq since 2007, including 22 last year and 38 in 2014 when Isis began to take territory in the region.

The Foreign Office advises against “all but essential travel” to half of Iraq, and against any travel to the north-western areas. …

Explainer: Child asylum claims

Children can apply for asylum when they first arrive in the UK, but the likelihood of getting refugee status at this point is low, and even less likely for Afghan or Iraqi children.

The UK Government does not generally deport unaccompanied children – so instead they are given temporary leave to remain, which lasts until they turn 17-and-a-half.

At this point, teenagers must apply to extend their leave. But the BIJ’s analysis of appeals from Afghan teenagers found just one in five was granted asylum at this point. Thousands of teenagers are deported after years living in the UK.

Refugee crisis: Welfare cuts and anti-migration policies ‘will not stop’ asylum seekers coming to Europe – report. New laws might change the countries where refugees end up but they will not stop them arriving, a report found: here.

‘Afghan government, stop refugees or else’, German government says

This video is about Germany. Hundreds demand justice for Kunduz massacre victims in Afghanistan.

From daily The Independent in Britain today:

Germany to continue security operations in Afghanistan only if arrival of refugees stopped

Alexandra Sims

Germany’s interior minister has promised Afghanistan it will continue to provide security support to the country, but only if the arrival of Afghan refugees to the country is stopped.

During a visit to Kabul on Monday, Thomas de Maiziere said: “We’re staying here as long as it’s necessary. But we also expect that the Afghan population stays here,” N-tv reports.

“We want the influx of refugees to be stopped.”

And how, Herr de Maiziere, is the Kabul government supposed to stop Afghan refugees from fleeing?

By bringing peace to the country? They and their big NATO paymasters have proved to be extremely unable to do that for the past fourteen years and longer.

By improving the situation of Afghan women? They and their big NATO paymasters have proved to be extremely unable to do that for the past fourteen years and longer.

By stopping sexual abuse of children? United States occupation generals have said it is OK for Afghan warlords to carry on with that.

By stopping the poverty and hunger? They and their big NATO paymasters have proved to be extremely unable to do that for the past fourteen years and longer. As all the trillons of money go to warfare, to corrupt Western merchants of death and to corrupt Afghan warlords.

Then, in what other way should the Afghan government stop refugees?

Recently, in Germany extreme right racist politicians advocated violently stopping Afghan and other refugees crossing the German border. Asked if they really believed that German border guards should stop refugee women and children from crossing the border through open fields with firearms they answered ‘Yes’.

Is Herr de Maiziere now advising the Afghan government that their border guards should stop refugee women and children from crossing the border out of Afghanistan through open fields by killing these refugee women and children?

By the way, only a small minority of refugees from the bloody war in Afghanistan go to Germany.

Why have millions of refugees fled Afghanistan? Partly because of war crimes there by Herr de Maiziere’s German armed forces. Like the Kunduz massacre of civilians. A massacre covered up by you, Herr de Maiziere. When you were not yet Minister of the Interior like now, but Minister of War … oops, I should have used the euphemism ‘Defence’. You, Herr de Maiziere, demonstratively promoted Colonel Klein, responsible for that bloody massacre, early in 2013 to the rank of brigadier general.

Of course, refugees from Afghanistan flee not only German war crimes. If we limit ourselves to Kunduz, where the German Bundeswehr had committed their massacre: recently, the United States Air Force, your NATO allies, Herr de Maiziere, lethally attacked the MSF hospital, the only hospital in Kunduz.

Germany has been engaged in operations in Afghanistan since 2003 and has trained over 73,000 Afghan police personnel. Around 980 German troops remain in the country since the NATO mission in Afghanistan officially ended in 2014.

Mr Maiziere said German police and soldiers will remain in Afghanistan “as long as it asks for security,” but stressed, “because we want to stay, we do not want that many Afghans to leave their country.”

The minister quashed any expectations Afghans may hold upon coming to Germany, stressing chances of asylum seekers finding success were slight.

“There is no welcome money in Germany. There is no guarantee of a job or an apartment,” Mr Maiziere told state broadcaster ZDF, warning Afghans not to succumb to propaganda spread by people smugglers. …

Mr Maiziere promised to bolster deportations of Afghans from Germany, using current flight routes between the countries and hiring charter planes. …

Mr Maiziere made the comments just hours after a Taliban suicide bomber blew himself up outside a Kabul police station, killing at least 20 people and wounding 29 others – the latest attack in the Afghan capital. …

On social media, people remarked upon the German government’s call to send refugees back to Afghanistan in the wake of the attack.

One Twitter user wrote: “Mr Maiziere is demanding from others that they live in a land that he’ll only visit with the protection of a division of soldiers

Another said: “Despite the attack in Kabul, Mr Maiziere is calling for Afghans to go back”

The US war in Afghanistan produced at least 11,000 civilian casualties last year, setting a new official record, according to a report by the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan: here.

Hitler copycat attacks Afghan war refugees

This satiric music video says about itself:

Der Fuehrer’s Face


When der fuehrer says we is de master race
We heil heil right in der fuehrer’s face
Not to love der fuehrer is a great disgrace
So we heil heil right in der fuehrer’s face

When Herr Goebbels says we own the world and space
We heil heil right in Herr Goebbels’ face
When Herr Göring says they’ll never bomb dis place
We heil heil right in Herr Göring’s face
Are we not he supermen Aryan pure supermen
Ja we are the supermen (super duper supermen)
Is this Nutsy land so good
Would you leave it if you could
Ja this Nutsy land is good
We would leave it if we could
We bring the world to order
Heil Hitler’s world to order
Everyone of foreign race
Will love der fuehrer’s face
When we bring to the world disorder

From daily The Independent in Britain today:

German man with Hitler moustache attacks refugees using swastika helmet before doing Nazi salute

Police said the two men from Afghanistan had been enjoying the snow in Altenberg

Lizzie Dearden

A man wearing a swastika-emblazoned helmet and “Hitler moustache” has attacked two refugees on a ski slope in Germany.

Police in Dresden said the friends from Afghanistan were sledging in the snowy Ore Mountains in Altenberg on Sunday when the stranger approached.

“A young man approached them on the slope, wearing a steel helmet emblazoned with a swastika,” a spokesperson said.

“The stranger purposefully walked up to two men from Afghanistan (aged 21 and 26) and insulted them.

“Shortly afterwards, he hit the younger man in the head using his helmet, causing him to fall to the ground.”

The attacker continued to torment the pair until a passer-by intervened, at which point he left, but not before performing a Nazi salute.

German authorities are treating the incident, which left the 21-year-old asylum seeker needing medical treatment, as aggravated assault.

The perpetrator is also wanted for the “use of symbols of unconstitutional organisations”, which is used to ban the Hitler salute along with the display of swastikas and other Nazi symbols.

In an appeal for information, police described the suspect as aged between 25 to 30, about 175 cm tall, … and of “muscular build”.

He was bald with facial hair resembling a “Hitler moustache” and wearing a light blue jeans and a khaki jacket.

January has seen a spate of angry anti-refugee protests and revenge attacks across Germany since the attacks in Cologne on New Year’s Eve.

Last weekend, the New York Times published a vile commentary by Jochen Bittner entitled “Can Germany Be Honest About Its Refugee Problems?” In the article, Bittner, a regular contributor to the German weekly Die Zeit who also writes for the Times, calls for tougher action against refugees. Bittner demands that German Chancellor Angela Merkel admit that she underestimated what he calls the “refugee problem” in Germany, declaring that “potentially thousands of these men are criminals, with no other goal than to rob and betray their hosts.” Among Bittner’s demands are the mass arrest and deportation of refugees: here.