German professor under fire for racist slurs against female Muslim student

Professor from Bonn-Rhein-Sieg university use racist slurs, insults against student wearing headscarf

Mesut Zeyrek  | 12.06.2023 - Update : 12.06.2023
German professor under fire for racist slurs against female Muslim student FILE PHOTO

COLOGNE, Germany 

A Muslim student was racially insulted by a university professor in Germany because she was wearing a headscarf, her lawyer said on Monday. 

The incident occurred during an economics class at the campus of the Bonn-Rhein-Sieg university in northwestern Germany.

The professor used racist slurs and even compared the Muslim woman’s headscarf with the swastika symbol of neo-Nazis, lawyer Fatih Zingal said.

“Article 4 of the German Constitution protects religious freedom, and a student can attend lessons by wearing a headscarf. The attitude of this professor is absolutely unacceptable,” he told Anadolu.

It was the latest in a string of Islamophobic incidents and hate crimes in Germany, particularly affecting women wearing Islamic covers.

Gulsen Kurt, who was shocked by the lecturer’s use of racist slurs, said most of the students reacted and left the class in protest.

“The professor said that he will not allow a student with headscarf to attend the class, just as he would not allow a neo-Nazi wearing a swastika, He shouted at me, saying ‘you are an Islamofascist’, and that he will report me to the directorate,” she told Anadolu.

Kurt said the directorate had apologized over the racist slurs in class and underlined that the behavior of the lecturer is not approved by the university administration.

A country of over 84 million people, Germany has the second-largest Muslim population in Western Europe after France. It is home to nearly 5 million Muslims, according to official figures.

The country had witnessed growing racism and Islamophobia in recent years, fueled by the propaganda of far-right groups and parties.

German police recorded 5,372 xenophobic incidents and 610 Islamophobic hate crimes last year.

Experts say actual figures could be much higher, as many of them are not properly investigated or registered in the official statistics.

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