Conservatives have warned for years that welcoming a huge amount of mostly young, male refugees into Germany was a mistake.
Wednesday, the German government released a study that admitted the truth. The facts don’t like — the 2015/2016 open board policy has led to a shocking increase in violent crime in the country, according to this government-funded study.
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The study used figures from the northern state of Lower Saxony to examine the impact of refugee arrivals on crime in 2015 and 2016, a period when the number of violent crimes reported increased by 10.4 percent.
The authors concluded that 92 percent of the additional crimes recorded was directly attributed to the increase in refugee numbers.
It noted that the demographic composition of the refugee population is a major factor. Young males — whether Germans or migrants — are generally more likely to commit crimes, but also more likely to become victims of violence.
The findings add to the ongoing debate in Germany about how to tackle migrant crime, which has been fanned by a number of high-profile incidents . Parties on the right, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Union bloc, want a tough response and more deportations.
“It is true that since 2015 there has been a rise in violent crime that the authors attribute to the arrival of refugees,” said Verena Herb, a spokeswoman for the Families Ministry that commissioned the study.
The study, led by prominent criminologist Christian Pfeiffer and published by the Zurich University of Applied Sciences, says most of the refugees came to Germany from Muslim countries that are “characterized by male dominance” and an acceptance of a “macho culture” that can justify violence.
The lack of women among Germany’s refugee population is also seen as an aggravating factor.
“This makes it more likely for groups of young men to emerge among the refugees and they can develop a violent dynamic of their own,” the authors wrote.
The Associated Press contributed to this article