Amid jeers, Merkel vows ‘no tolerance’ of far-right hatred

Published 10:08 am Wednesday, August 26, 2015

BERLIN — Angela Merkel urged Germans to stand up against hatred and vowed zero tolerance for attacks against refugees, even as more than a hundred far-right protesters booed her visit to a shelter for asylum-seekers Wednesday.

Merkel had traveled to Heidenau, a small town near Germany’s eastern border with the Czech Republic, to express support for refugees following neo-Nazi riots at the site over the weekend. Dozens of police were injured when a far-right mob hurled bottles and fireworks at officers in an attempt to prevent asylum seekers from moving into the former hardware store south of Dresden on Friday and Saturday.

“It’s shameful and repulsive what we experienced here,” Merkel said, speaking of the weekend disturbance. A couple of hundred meters (yards) away, far-right protesters jeered and sounded car horns. Some protesters held placards denouncing the government, while others shouted “traitors” and “lying press.”

Email newsletter signup

Speaking to reporters after meeting aid workers, local officials and some of the 560 refugees at the site, Merkel praised those “who have to endure hatred.”

“We need to use all our strength to make clear that we won’t tolerate those who call the dignity of others into question.