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German TV Decision to Ignore Murder Committed by Refugee Causes Heated Debate

© AP Photo / Julian Stratenschulte/dpaPolice officers seach a residential building opposite the German-Speaking Islamic Circle Hildesheim mosque in Hildesheim, Germany, Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2016
Police officers seach a residential building opposite the German-Speaking Islamic Circle Hildesheim mosque in Hildesheim, Germany, Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2016 - Sputnik International
The decision of German broadcaster ARD not to report about the arrest of an Afghan refugee suspected of raping and murdering a 19-year-old woman in Freiburg caused severe criticism not only among Internet users, but also among politicians.

On Tuesday, head of the Bundestag Committee on Internal Policy Ansgar Heveling that such move made an "unpleasant impression," especially given the fact that all other media outlets across Germany reported about the rape and the murder of the young woman even before the perpetrator was identified.

"I believe that the decision of Tagesshau (an ARD news program) was wrong. It, of course, made the impression that they didn't report about the murder due to the fact that the suspect was an underage asylum seeker who entered the country unaccompanied. This is an unpleasant impression," Heveling told Funke media group.

ARD Television studios - Sputnik International
German Channel Criticized for Ignoring Rape, Murder Incident With Refugee
Editor-in-chief of the ARD Kai Gniffke earlier said that program was mainly aimed at featuring important social and international events and quite seldom covered separate criminal cases, while thousands of users wrote on the Facebook page of the channel that the case was extremely important and all other media had covered it, according to the newspaper.

Commenting on the issue, head of the German police trade union Rainer Wendt said in an interview with German newspaper Bild that the country could avoid "this and many other casualties, if it was prepared for the dangers that are always associated with mass immigration."

His statement heated an ongoing debate about the immigration policy of Angela Merkel. Thus, Deputy Chairman of the SPD party Ralf Stegner commented on Wendt's words in his Twitter account in the following way:

​"Statements by the head of the German Police Trade Union Wendt (CDU) about violent crime in Freiburg is politically disgusting and is more stupid than it is allowed by the police."

For her turn, head of the Alternative for Germany (AfD party) Frauke Petry stated that Stenger's reaction is just a "denial of reality."

​"Some comments cause shock. Stenger's hollow rudeness shows where Germany has come in 2016."

For his turn co-chairman of AfD Jörg Meuthen expressed his indignation about the crime.

"We are shocked by this crime — and at the same time we witnessed that our warnings about the uncontrolled entry of hundreds of thousands of young men from the patriarchal Islamic cultural circles were pejoratively called populist," the politician said.

On Saturday, German police detained a 17-year-old Afghan refugee, who was suspected of having raped and murdered a 19-year-old medical student in Freiburg. The teenage boy was reportedly detained after DNA tests performed on the victim's body. Student Maria L. was murdered on October 15 after a university party. She was a practicing Catholic and a member of the Facebook group Fluechtlingshilfe Freiburg (Aid for Refugees in Freiburg).

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