Refugee's wait near the first registration point of the German federation police in Rosenheim, southern Germany, on July 29, 2015. AFP PHOTO / CHRISTOF STACHE
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It's an astonishing statement for a refugee from war-torn Syria, but Taher has had enough of the xenophobia he has experienced in Germany.Germany, struggling with a huge influx of refugees, has been gripped by a spate of anti-foreigners rallies, violence and arson attacks against refugee homes or would-be shelters.The country now faces a paradox: A generous asylum system originally meant to help atone for its Nazi past has opened the gates to Europe's biggest influx of refugees – sparking ugly reactions that recall Germany's darkest days.This year has already seen about 200 arson and other attacks against refugee housing – roughly the same as all of last year, when numbers were already up sharply.In recent days Freital – an economically depressed town of 40,000 in Saxony state in what was once East Germany – has become a symbol of the upsurge in hostility.In protests against the imminent arrival of 280 refugees outside a converted hotel, neo-Nazis raised their arms in Hitler salutes, mingling in larger crowds of people shouting "criminal foreigners" and "asylum-seeker pigs". Dresden – a magnet for neo-Nazi groups embittered by the city's war-time destruction – again made headlines last week when far-right thugs attacked Red Cross staff setting up a tent city for 800 mostly Syrian refugees.
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