Focus on Integration in Germany After French Riots | Germany| News and in-depth reporting from Berlin and beyond | DW | 08.11.2005
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Focus on Integration in Germany After French Riots

Germany's incoming grand coalition of Christian Democrats and Social Democrats plans to pay more attention to the integration of immigrants as a result of the ongoing violence in neighboring France.


Integration's a central issue in Germany as well

Both parties -- currently in the middle of fine-tuning their coalition treaty that is expected to be completed this week -- want to place more emphasis on integration, Volker Kauder, the secretary general of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU), told reporters without giving any further details about concrete plans.

German politicians meanwhile called on people not to overreact while viewing the riots as a clear warning sign.

Wolfgang Schäuble

Wolfgang Schäuble

"We also have areas with a high percentage of foreigners who withdraw more and more from the rest of society," incoming Interior Minister Wolfgang Schäuble (CDU) told Bild tabloid. "We have to improve integration, especially that of young people."

Others such as CDU parliamentarian Hermann Gröhe, said that Germans had sometimes been too tolerant in the past.

"If our society has not been interested or kept quiet about female circumcision and forced marriages in parallel societies, about people -- almost always women -- getting murdered because the family's honor requires it, that has nothing to do with respecting other cultures," Gröhe told German public broadcaster RBB. "It's rather a shameful lack of respect for the victims of inhumane traditions."

Viole n ce subsides a little i n Fra n ce

In France, meanwhile, police said Tuesday that 1,173 vehicles were burnt and 330 people arrested overnight as France experienced its 12th straight night of urban violence.


Still fires, but fewer

Twelve police officers were lightly hurt, mainly by thrown projectiles. Some officers were the target for people firing buckshot, though none was hit. A dozen buildings were hit by arsonists.

The number of vehicles torched and arrests made were slightly lower than for the previous night, possibly signaling a tapering off of the unrest that has raged since Oct. 27.

Overnight Sunday, more than 1,400 automobiles were gutted by flames and 395 people were detained.

President Jacques Chirac was to hold a cabinet meeting Tuesday which was to give regional authorities the power to impose curfews if necessary to restore public order.

Curfew law first used i n Algeria

Prime Minister Dominique de Villepin said late Monday he was invoking a 60-year-old law first brought in as an unsuccessful attempt to quell an insurrection in Algeria, at a time when the north African country was a French colony.

Villepin, speaking on national television, said regional authorities would be given the power to impose curfews "where necessary."

Bildgalerie Frankreich Wahlen Paris Vorort Siedlung Hochhaus

Boys play soccer in Grigny, a suburb south of Paris

The measure -- effectively a state of emergency for areas around cities and towns -- would ban night time movements of people and vehicles and allow police to set up roadblocks around certain zones.

Government ministers were to adopt the measure by decree in the cabinet meeting early Tuesday and it would be applicable from Wednesday, Villepin said.

The prime minister ruled out an army intervention to stop the violence, but said that 1,500 police and gendarme reservists would be deployed as reinforcements for 8,000 officers already on the ground.

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