A Berlin-based refugee rights activist on Friday harshly criticized the German government for what he said was its unequal treatment of refugees from Ukraine and the Middle East on racial grounds.
“It's disgusting because people who are running away from war, who are running away from bombings would be treated differently,” Biplab Basu told Anadolu Agency in an exclusive interview.
Basu, who is a consultant at the non-governmental organization ReachOut, added: “It is rampant that refugees from the Middle East, India, Pakistan, and various African countries have been treated completely differently and in a racial manner.”
He stressed that the discrimination against non-European refugees in Germany had to be “condemned.”
“This is racial discrimination. As you say brown and blue-eyed people are being treated differently …,” Basu went on to say.
There have been widespread German media reports that Ukrainian refugees have received preferential treatment compared to their Middle Eastern and African counterparts.
While Ukrainian refugees can easily enter Germany, Middle Easterners and Africans are reportedly being harassed by German border police.
Furthermore, non-European refugees are reportedly being evicted from their shelters and homes in Germany to make room for Ukrainian refugees.
Meanwhile, Basu confirmed media reports about the ongoing discrimination, while pointing out that the justice minister of the state of Berlin had in fact given a recent statement against the mistreatment of non-European refugees.
“We have reports from people who were not accepted or who were taken out of the queues by the federal police at the railway station Hauptbahnhof in Berlin, and they were taken to the police station and kept for hours and questioned. So the German government can stop that,” Basu said.
“I am not saying that the German government should go to Poland and stop people from being discriminated against, but it can do it in its own territories,” the activist said, adding the government should send a very strong signal to the European partners not to treat refugees from the Middle East or Asia or Africa on racial grounds.
More than 350,000 Ukrainian refugees have entered Germany since the Russia-Ukraine war started on Feb. 24.