The Lord Mayor of Suhl, André Knapp ( Christian Democratic Union, CDU), has spoken out against the reception of further refugees in the Thuringian city and warned against overburdening the residents.
“From the lessons learned in recent weeks, I do not see that the facility in Suhl should and can permanently accept even more asylum seekers,” explained Knapp in response to a request from the magazine FOCUS Online. Suhl is home to the initial reception facility for asylum seekers in Thuringia. Around 600 people are currently housed there.The left-wing state government had recently announced its intention to take in 500 more refugees and reiterated its plans after the major fire in the Greek refugee camp Moria. Thuringian CDU politicians reject this – among other things with reference to the conflict-laden atmosphere in the initial reception facility in Suhl.
In asylum accommodation, the crime rate has risen sharply in recent months. From January 2020 to mid May 2020 alone, the Suhl police recorded more than 200 crimes in which the suspects were residents of the shelter. In the city of 35,000 inhabitants, there are repeated clashes and the atmosphere is tense. Recently, bus drivers expressed their fear of continuing the route to the home because they were afraid of assaults and feared for the safety of the passengers.
“I can see that many people are reacting very negatively to the recurring and in some cases increasing number of crimes in the inner city,” explained Knapp to FOCUS Online, “I am getting calls from parents who are worried about letting their children walk through the inner city alone following the latest incident, a stabbing in broad daylight. The 47-year-old local politician, himself a father of three children: “Here, the rule of law must exhaust all available means to ensure law and order and security.In an interview with FOCUS Online, the CDU politician sharply criticized the left-wing state government for its handling of the asylum accommodation that opened in 2014. “In 2015 there were serious riots between the residents of the facility for the first time,” said the Lord Mayor.Thereupon, the local political leaders of the city of Suhl “repeatedly” addressed the Free State of Thuringia as operator of the asylum center and “reported organizational deficiencies”. Knapp: “However, the actual willingness of the Free State of Thuringia to create the necessary organizational and personnel conditions for the safe and secure handling of the facility was extremely deplorable.