Missteps in the Czech Republic’s handling of migrants draw ire
- Czech police have discontinued numbering migrants by pen at the Breclav train station after human rights and Jewish advocacy groups expressed outrage.
- Authorities said the numbering, which critics said had resonance with Holocaust-era practices, had been an attempt to keep from separating families.
- Despite having had only a fraction of the asylum requests received by larger European countries, the Czech Republic has experienced a surge in anti-immigrant (largely anti-Muslim) sentiment.
“This incident shows how certain countries in Europe have been hit completely off guard. … The image of labeling refugees brings historical images of the Second World War to mind, and the police and border guards should understand the requirement under international conventions to treat migrants with the dignity they deserve. Countries can’t punish people for being migrants.”
Read the full story at the New York Times.
(Image Credit: Igor Zehl/CTK, via Associated Press)