Last Updated: Tuesday, 19 August 2014, 14:59 GMT

Chronology for Turks in Germany

Publisher Minorities at Risk Project
Publication Date 2004
Cite as Minorities at Risk Project, Chronology for Turks in Germany, 2004, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/469f388ec.html [accessed 20 August 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.
Date(s) Item
Mar 30 - Apr 2, 1990 East German plans to drop visa requirements for Turks sparks a row with West Germany which fears it could be swamped with a surge of immigrants. This results in East Germany agreeing not to drop the visa requirement.
Apr 20, 1990 East German police report that about 200 neo-Nazi skinheads assaulted police and passers by after a soccer game in East Berlin shouting, among other things, "beat up Turks."
Jun 13, 1990 Over 500 Turkish Kurds are stranded in Czechoslovakia after being refused admission into West Germany.
Sep 6, 1990 About 80 Turks and "neo-Nazi soccer ruffians" brawl in East Berlin after a soccer match.
Sep 18, 1990 53 Turkish Kurds are arrested in Czechoslovakia trying to illegally cross the border into East Germany.
Oct 3, 1990 East and West Germany reunite.
Oct 31, 1990 A German court overturns local laws passed in 1989 in Hamburg and Schleswig-Holstein allowing long term foreign residents, including Turks, to vote.
Nov 25, 1990 Police in Frankfurt-on-Oder, on the Polish border, report that about 50 skinheads attacked the van of a Turkish salesman and then rampaged through the city seriously injuring 2 Africans.
Nov 26, 1990 A government spokesman reports that racist attacks against foreigners in what was Communist East Germany are increasing.
Mar 26, 1991 Reuters reports that xenophobia and competition from ethnic German settlers are worrying Germany's foreign workers.
Oct 3, 1991 German police report at least 12 attacks on homes of foreign workers and asylum seekers.
Oct 4, 1991 German President Richard Von Weizaecker visits hostels for foreign refugees to reassure them that Germany condemns the rising racist violence in the country.
Oct 8, 1991 Hundreds of Germans sick of a rash of vicious neo-Nazi attacks on foreigners link arms in a human chain around a hostel for foreigners in order to protect it from a mob of right-wingers. Reuters reports that there have been nearly 500 attacks upon foreigners in Germany in the past three weeks.
Nov 14, 1991 The Berlin Justice Department says that it is investigating 3 German men for the manslaughter of a 19 year old Turk who died of injuries suffered in a racist brawl.
Nov 15, 1991 120 Turkish youths rally in protest of the death of a Turkish youth and brawl with Germans and lob bottles, rocks and fireworks at police when they intervene.
Nov 16, 1991 500 young Turks battle riot police in Berlin during a march by 6000 people, about 60% of them Turks, to mourn the death of a young Turk in a racist brawl and in protest against xenophobic violence in Germany in general. The demonstration was peaceful until the police arrested a German marcher for carrying a gun.
Nov 17, 1991 A neo-Nazi gang throws a petrol-bomb at a Turkish wedding party.
1992 Racist attacks doubled in 1992 with more than 2280 attacks carried out including 701 arson attacks and 600 beatings. Two thirds of the recorded assaults were committed by teenagers and only 2% were committed by people over the age of 30. But the attacks dropped off substantially after the November 23 killings. There are at least 3800 known right wing extremists in what was Eastern Germany and at least 2600 in Western Germany.
Apr 9, 1992 The right-wing Republican party spearheads an effort to prevent the building of a mosque in Pforzheim for fear it could "form the center of a little Mecca" for Turks.
May 10, 1992 A demonstration by Turks and left-wingers against a meeting of right-wingers in Hamburg leads to violent clashes with police.
Aug 16 - 31, 1992 A 5 day riot against foreigners takes place in Rostock.
Sep 3, 1992 Right-wingers burn down a refugee hostel in Berlin in their continuing violence against foreigners.
Nov 14, 1992 Over 100,000 Germans mass in Bonn to demonstrate against right-wing and anti-foreigner violence as well as for the preservation of liberal asylum rights for the politically persecuted (under which 23,000 Turks entered Germany in the first 9 months of 1992). Many Turks turned out for the rally waving Turkish flags.
Nov 23, 1992 3 Turks are killed in an arson attack near Luebeck and a racist riot occurs in Rostock. German Turkish leaders cite the need for protection by the state against right wing attacks. They claim that the attacks allegedly targeting asylum seekers are really targeted against Turks. They also point out that, despite right wing contentions otherwise, the Turks in Germany contribute more in the form of taxes than they take in the form of welfare and that their businesses contribute to the German economy.
Nov 23 - Dec 31, 1992 Several protests against the killing of 3 Turks in a firebombing on November 23 occur with as many as 450,000 showing up to individual rallies. A minority of these rallies are marred by violence. Also the German government condemns the incident.
Nov 24, 1992 In reaction to the killing of 3 Turks in a firebombing on November 23, Turkish businessmen threaten to stop paying taxes unless Germany improves its protection of foreign residents. Also, 40 Turks briefly occupy a regional office of the ruling Christian Democrats.
Nov 25, 1992 The number of racist attacks upon foreigners and Jews in Germany in 1992 reaches about 1800.
Nov 27, 1992 Germany banns a neo-Nazi party in a crackdown brought on by the November 23 killings. From this point on, Germany wages an aggressive campaign against neo-Nazi organizations.
Dec 22, 1992 4 neo-Nazi groups have now been banned in Germany.
Dec 23, 1992 2 Turks are injured when a bomb disguised as an Xmas present explodes in their faces.
Jan 1993 Protests against racist violence in Germany, inspired by the killing of 3 Turks in a firebombing on November 23, continue with the numbers of protestors reaching as high as 40,000 at individual demonstrations. Passers by in Cologne stand by and watch a skinhead viciously beat a 16-year-old Turkish girl on a city street. An old man eventually comes to her rescue.
1993 Due to a crackdown on right-wing extremists, violent crime with a right-wing background fell considerably in 1993 from 2684 attacks in 1992 to 1880 in 1993. The number of attacks in 1992 presented here is not the same as the one presented earlier due to inconsistencies in reporting.
Jan 5, 1993 Foreign refugees, including Kurdish Turks, armed with clubs chase off a gang of 6 German right wingers attacking their hostel in a small Bavarian town.
Jan 16, 1993 A firebomb hurled at a hostel for foreign refugees in northern Germany fails to ignite.
Jan 26, 1993 A fire started by arsonists injures 5 in a German hostel for refugees in the Rhine city of Duisburg.
Feb 4, 1993 3 Turks are injured in an arson attack on 3 houses in Cologne.
Feb 8, 1993 A Turkish family flees from a pre-dawn arson attack upon their home in southwest Germany.
Feb 14, 1993 10 are injured in a firebomb attack on a Turkish owned restaurant in the western German city of Ludwigshafen.
Mar 10, 1993 A 56 year old Turk is beaten to death by 2 drunken Germans in Mulheim.
Mar 16, 1993 Police report 141 crimes by right-wing extremists in January and February which is a drop from the same period last year
Mar 18, 1993 In continuing efforts to crack down on right-wing extremists, German police raid and search the homes of 29 right-wing extremists finding explosives and racist literature.
Mar 19, 1993 A refugee camp in the northern town of Moelln is firebombed.
Mar 26, 1993 Germany launches a PR campaign against racism.
Mar 30, 1993 Several German states concerned about rising crime in their migrant communities are breaking long traditions and hiring Turks and other foreigners into their police forces.
Apr 15, 1993 According to a government study, most Germans condemn far-right violence against foreigners.
Apr 30, 1993 Three chain swinging skinheads attack a group of Turkish students and their teacher at an East Berlin train station.
May 1993 About 400 racist attacks including 33 firebombings and 59 beatings occur.
May 7, 1993 Two Turkish teenagers are injured in an arson attack.
May 29, 1993 Five Turks are killed in an arson attack in Solingen. Turks and Germans spontaneously march in Solingen and elsewhere in Germany in response to the incident.
May 30, 1993 The home of a suspected right-wing skinhead is wrecked by as many as 20 unknown attackers. Earlier, police stopped 60 people, some of them Turks, from storming the flat after a bottle was thrown from it at a Turkish owned car.
May 30 - Jun 5, 1993 Rioters, mostly Turks, clash with police, loot shops, block highways and vandalize property in several days of sustained rioting in Solingen in response to the murder of 5 Turks on May 29. There are also a few riots and several anti-racist protests of as many as 15,000 demonstrators elsewhere in Germany.
Jun 1993 At least 16 firebombings against Turks and other foreigners occur in what becomes an almost nightly occurrence.
Jun 3, 1993 The southern German state of Bavaria bans a congress by the far-right National Democratic Party because it will not guarantee its safety from protestors.
Jun 10, 1993 Police detain 70 weapon bearing protestors, some of them Turks, in Cologne.
Jun 11, 1993 Germany bans a 5th neo-Nazi party.
Jun 21, 1993 Neo-Nazis send a death threat to the editor of a major German newspaper for printing letters from Turkish students condemning racist violence.
Jun 23, 1993 A law is passed to make foreign residents eligible for state compensation for violence committed against them.
Jul 1, 1993 More than 1000 racist attacks were reported in the first 6 months of this year.
Jul 1993 Several more arson attacks against Turks and other foreigners occur.
Jul 6, 1993 3 Turks are shot to death in Berlin.
Aug 1993 Several more arson attacks against Turks and other foreigners occur.
Aug 18, 1993 One of Germany's leading polling institutes reports that the growth in anti-foreign violence in Germany is due to greater militancy among extremists and not spreading racism.
Aug 27, 1993 3 suspected neo-Nazis club a 24 year old Turk unconscious in the northern town of Lotte, spraying swastikas on his face and around his home.
Oct 20, 1993 One million Germans have signed a petition in favor of giving Germany's foreign population, including Turks, the right to dual nationality.
Oct 27, 1993 The parliamentary factions in Germany's ruling coalition agree to make it easier to acquire German citizenship. They agree to reduce the residency requirement from 15 to, 10 years and to extend the possibility of dual citizenship in exceptional cases where giving up one's old citizenship would impose severe drawbacks. However, no action is taken on this agreement as it gets mired in parliamentary politics. Two arson attacks on Turkish houses occur in the southwestern town of Saarbruken.
Nov 1993 Germany bans the Kurdish Workers' Party (PKK) and affiliated groups in response to a series of attacks on Turkish targets across Europe.
Nov 16, 1993 A Turkish vigilante group formed in response to racist threats prevents the nighttime firebombing of a house inhabited by foreigners in the northern town of Achim.
Nov 23, 1993 A march is held in Moelln on the anniversary of 3 Turks being killed in a firebombing attack.
Dec 19, 1993 A Turkish restaurant in Darmstadt is firebombed.
Dec 25, 1993 A Turk is killed in a firebombing at a refugee home in one of many Christmas day firebombings.
Jan 1, 1994 About 30 Turks and 59 Germans clash outside a disco in Moisburg.
Mar 1994 7 people including 2 Turks die in one of several firebombings this month.
Apr 20, 1994 Arsonists set fire to a house inhabited by Turks in the western town of Bielefield.
May 3, 1994 Arsonists set fire to a building containing assembly rooms used by foreigners including Turks.
May 13, 1994 After a mob of about 40 knife wielding neo-Nazis attack a group of Africans, a group of Turkish led foreigners and leftists engage in a clash with the neo-Nazi mob.
May 15, 1994 Police manage to diffuse a confrontation between 15 right-wingers and 70 Turks.
May 21, 1994 Police suspect arson when a daycare center for Turkish and German children is gutted by fire.
May 25, 1994 Several Turks and Germans brawl in Mannheim.
May 28 - 29, 1994 About 8000 anti-racist protestors gather in Solingen to protest the killing of five Turks a year ago in an arson attack.
May 30, 1994 2 are injured in arson attacks against Turkish targets in Hamburg.
Jun 10, 1994 German police in Darmstadt stop a group of Turks from setting themselves on fire after their children were beaten by neighbors.
Jun 18, 1994 A building housing a German-Turkish friendship association in the northern city of Bremen is set on fire.
Jul 3, 1994 Arsonists throw firebombs at a Turkish cultural center in Hamburg.
Jul 23, 1994 2 Turkish restaurants in Berlin are firebombed.
Aug 9, 1994 Arson guts a Turkish mosque and cultural center in southwest Germany. Arson attacks against a Turkish travel agency in Esson and a Turkish cultural club in Munich also took place within the past few days.
Aug 11, 1994 A Turkish prayer room in a building in Singen is firebombed.
Aug 15, 1994 Arsonists set fire to a Turkish tea house in the western German town of Hamm.
Aug 18, 1994 Arson is suspected in a fire at a Turkish owned warehouse.
Sep 2, 1994 Arsonists firebomb a Turkish textile shop in southern Germany.
Sep 14, 1994 Arsonists set fire to a Turkish home in southwest Germany.
Sep 22, 1994 Arsonists firebomb a Turkish home in the southeastern town of Etbondorf.
Sep 29, 1994 A Turkish cultural center is firebombed.
Oct 16 - Nov 15, 1994 After the October 16 national elections, coalition talks between the ruling Christian Democrats and their Free Democrat allies center on, among other things, Free Democrat demands to lower the requirements for permanent foreign residents, including Turks, to acquire German citizenship.
Oct 18, 1994 Arsonists burn down a club for Turks in southern Germany.
Nov 5, 1994 Between 16,000 and 60,000 people march in mourning for a Kurdish youth accidentally shot by a policeman.
Nov 10, 1994 The first person of Turkish origin to become a member of Germany's parliament takes his seat.
Nov 23, 1994 A German men's magazine draws criticism for satirically publishing a cardboard cut-out replica of a house in which 5 Turks were burned to death for neo-Nazis to burn.
Nov 26, 1994 Hundreds of Kurdish activists protest in several German cities to mark the first anniversary of a ban on militant groups linked to the Kurdish Worker's Party (PKK).
Nov 28, 1994 Several firebomb attacks occur on Turkish establishments and restaurants across Germany. 4 Kurds are detained for one of the attacks. While many such attacks have been blamed on right-wing violence against Turks, police have blames some of them on infighting between left and right-wing Turkish groups or on Kurdish militants.
Dec 7, 1994 A Turkish cultural center in Worms is fire bombed.
Dec 28, 1994 A Turkish-owned tea shop in northern Germany is fire bombed.
Jan 9, 1995 Reuters reports that German police suspect that a PKK death squad has been operating in Germany, attacking former PKK members who have split with the party.
Jan 16, 1995 Germany's North-Rhine Westphalia education ministry, representing Germany's most populous state, announces plans to expand optional Islamic religious instruction for Moslem pupils in state schools. Islamic instruction, which has in the past been available for children aged 6 to 9, will now be expanded to include children aged 10 to 12.
Mar 2, 1995 Germany bans 6 Kurdish organizations for having close ties to the PKK. This comes in the wake of several fire bombings of Turkish targets by assailants believed to have ties to the PKK.
Mar 9, 1995 Unidentified attackers firebomb 2 adjoining houses occupied mainly by Turks in a small German town.
Mar 14 - Apr 1, 1995 Almost nightly fire bombings of Turkish targets including travel agencies, shops, cultural centers and a Mosque occur. German police blame most of the fire bombings on Kurdish extremists.
Apr 1995 The fire bombings continue sporadically. Kurds and left-wing Turkish groups are blamed. 148 politically motivated attacks on Turks have occurred since February 17.
May 16, 1995 Amnesty International reports a clear and worrying pattern of police ill-treatment of foreigners and ethnic minorities in Germany.
Jul 6, 1995 Interior ministry officials report that the number of racial attacks in Germany fell to 860 in 1994, down from 1,609 in 1993 and 2,277 in 1992. They attribute this decline to mainstream disgust with the far-right and the open support by many Germans for racial tolerance.
Jul 18 - Aug 9, 1995 A series of arson attacks on Kurdish targets occurs. Police blame Kurdish extremists. The PKK denies responsibility.
Aug 11, 1995 A group of Kurds clash with police at a Kurdish cultural center in Berlin.
Aug 30, 1995 An arson attack destroys the house of a Kurdish family.
Sep 4, 1995 One Kurd is killed in a clash between Turkish and Kurd teenagers in a northern German city.
Sep 5, 1995 2 people are killed in an arson attack on a building in northern Germany inhabited mainly by Turks.
Oct 1 - Nov 30, 1995 A series of sporadic arson attacks on Turkish targets in Germany occurs. Police blame Kurdish extremists.
Oct 14, 1995 Four men accused of killing five Turks in Germany in 1993 were each sentenced to 10-15 years imprisonment. Turks who had hoped for life sentences protested the announcement, yet despite of their criticism, the sentences were tougher than many in recent racist trials.
Nov 27, 1995 About 150 Kurds demonstrated outside thee German embassy in the Hague to focus attention on the plight of hundreds of Kurds imprisoned in Germany. Those imprisoned in Germany are said to be PKK supporters.
Dec 3, 1995 Kurdish militants (36 men, 6 women and 5 children) who had threatened self-immolation surrendered to police after holing themselves up in a Munich office for 16 hours. The Kurds were protest the banning of a Kurdish parents' association. The police later found 40 Petrol bombs in the building.
Jan 19, 1996 At least 10 people, mostly foreigners from Africa, died after a German hostel went up in flames. Three youths were under arrest in the incident. Violence against foreigners no longer makes headlines, but the attacks occur regularly with more than 35 cases of arson and 310 racially-motivated acts of violence recorded in 1995.
Mar 20, 1996 Police detained 123 suspected PKK members in Stuttgart and Mannheim. Most were held for a short time and released after questioning, but 21 were expected to remain in custody for a week. Police also checked the identity papers of 600 others. Police had feared clashes similar to those recently in Dortmund when hundreds of Kurds and police fought street battles.
Mar 27, 1996 After a series of violent protests by the Kurdish minority, Bonn announced it would expel foreigners who took place in illegal demonstrations. Simple participation in a banned demonstration, previously viewed as a misdemeanor, will be redefined as a severe violation of public order leading to automatic expulsion. German politicians were facing mounting public concern that political disputes in the homelands of many foreign workers and residents, especially those of middle-east origin, are being played out on German soil
Jun 15, 1996 Tens of thousands of Kurds demonstrated in the city of Hamburg in support of Turks and Kurds living together in harmony.
Aug 2, 1996 A wave of firebomb attacks aimed at Turkish properties began in July 1996. There were 32 incidents reported in July, and only 73 in the six previous months. Turks expressed their disappointment over the lack of German community support amid the recent attacks carried out by suspected Turkish left-wing extremists. German authorities believed the July fire bombings were linked to the hunger strike in Turkish prisons which left 12 inmates dead. Two splinter groups from the leftist Dev Sol-banned in Germany in 1983-were thought to have organized the attacks. The German public appears to regard the attacks as an "affair among Turks," yet the police reportedly responded adequately to the attacks.
Sep 13, 1996 PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan said his organization renounced violence in Germany which is home to some 400,000 Kurds. All total, two million Turks live in Germany.
Nov 14, 1996 Foreigners who commit offenses in Germany would be easier to deport under a law sought by Kohl's government and approved by parliament (325 in favor, 307 against). The proposed law was prompted by violence at banned demonstrations by Kurds in Germany. Foreigners sentenced to more than 3 years' imprisonment would also be liable to expulsion under the proposed changes (a present expulsion applies to those sentenced to more than five years'). The bill was expected to be rejected by the upper house in which the Social Democrats have the majority.
Dec 5, 1996 A German court convicted three members of the PKK of membership in a terrorist organization and responsible for crimes including attacks on Turkish shops.
Jan 15, 1997 Turkish leaders denounced Bonn's plan to require visas for foreign children, including those born in Germany to Turkish parents, as discriminatory. The Interior Ministry defended the new requirements saying that the policy had been abused by parents who were trying to get their children established in Germany permanently. An estimated 600,000 children would be affected by the new rules.
Jan 26, 1997 In Ruhr, Lutheran Pastor Dietrich Reuter launched a crusade to ban the muezzin summoning the Islamic community (1/4 of the population) to daily prayers. One SPP leader August Haffner stated "the religious freedom enshrined in the Constitution applies only to German citizens, not to non-Germans," and Reuter stated the call to prayer is "anti-Christian in character; because they chant' there is but one God-Allah'." Muslim leaders argued that the row over the muezzin was merely a symptom of the discrimination they suffer at the hands of the German bureaucracy.
Jan 31, 1997 Frankfurt banned a Turkish anti-government protest saying it believed the demonstration could be used by the outlawed PKK. The PKK has been banned in Germany since 1993 after it organized a series of attacks on Turkish property in Germany.
Feb 5, 1997 Two people are injured as a Turkish cultural center in the town of Goeppingen is bombed (Reuters, 02/05/97).
Feb 27, 1997 Thousands of people, mostly Turks, demonstrate in Hamburg, Berlin, and Stuttgart against a new government rule that requires visas be issued for children who are under 16 years of age and from non-EU countries (Agence France Presse, 02/27/97).
Mar 19, 1997 6 German soldiers who beat up 2 Turks and an Italian with baseball bats in the town of Detmold are charged with three offences, including incitement to racial hatred. A representative of the Turkish community blames the government for its failure to develop a clear policy toward foreigners (Agence France Presse, 03/19/97).
Apr 1, 1997 3 Turkish persons die following an arson attack in Krefeld, Germany, while six other Turks are killed in arson attacks in the Netherlands. Turkish Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan accuses countries in Western and Northern Europe of tolerating an "anti-Islamic crusade" (Deutsche Presse-Agentur, 04/01/97).
Apr 3, 1997 The government summons the Turkish ambassador to Germany to protest recent criticism from Ankara regarding arson attacks against Turks living in Germany and the Netherlands (Reuters, 04/03/97).
Apr 4, 1997 Around 75 Turks and Kurds are detained in Cologne to prevent a violent confrontation between rival supporters of a Turkish and a Kurdish soccer team. Most are released after being held overnight (Reuters, 04/04/97).
Apr 5, 1997 Germany's Foreign Minister Klaus Kinkel criticizes Turkish political leaders for anti-German comments following an April 1 arson attack that resulted in the deaths of 3 Turks. Police have determined that the fire was set by a family member (Reuters, 04/05/97).
Apr 21, 1997 Some 57 Turkish youths are arrested as they protest in Dortmund following a fire that results in the deaths of 3 Turks. The government says the fire was not racially motivated (Deutsche Presse-Agentur, 04/21/97).
Apr 26, 1997 Around 45,000 Kurds demonstrate in Dusseldorf in support of a peaceful solution to the conflict between the Kurds and the Turkish government. There are over 400,000 Kurds in Germany (Reuters, 04/26/97).
May 1, 1997 More than 100,000 Germans demonstrate in various cities against record unemployment and a rise in right-wing extremism (Reuters, 05/01/1997).
Jun 4, 1997 One Turk is killed and 53 injured as fire engulfs an asylum seekers' hostel in the southern town of Friedrichshafen (Reuters, 06/04/97).
Jun 8, 1997 9 right-wing extremists are detained after a gang of them attack 4 Turks in the eastern state of Thuringia (Reuters, 06/08/97).
Jun 29, 1997 A Turkish man is attacked by 3 youths in Dresden. The authorities do not rule out the involvement of right-wing elements (Agence France Presse, 06/29/97).
Jul 15, 1997 Applications by two mosques to broadcast their muezzin's call to prayer over loudspeakers have been put on hold in the town of Duisburg following hundreds of protest letters and advertisements in newspapers. Claudia Keinert of the Institute for Turkish Studies contends that many of the published letters were of an extremely racist nature and that they are a sign of fear as people are looking for a scapegoat. The muezzin's call to prayer is allowed in at least seven North Rhine Westphalian towns (Deutsche Presse-Agentur, 07/15/97).
Sep 11, 1997 Germany's domestic intelligence service says of the 2.5 million Muslims in the country, around 31,000 have been identified as Islamic extremists. This includes some 28,000 Turks, 2300 Arabs and 300 Iranians. It does also note that there wasn't a single confirmed act of violence carried out by Islamic extremists through 1996. Police officials recently raided the offices and prayer centers of the 1500 member Federation of Islamic Associations and Communities (ICCB), asserting that it had told its members to kill any defectors. A former ICCB member was killed on May 8 reportedly following a call for his death by an ICCB preacher (Deutsche Presse-Agentur, 09/11/97).
Sep 30, 1997 Several hundred Kurds protest in Bonn over Turkish government policies toward its Kurdish population. The demonstration coincides with meetings between Turkish Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz and Chancellor Helmut Kohl. Germany is reported to have some 9000 PKK members. More than 2 million Turks reside in Germany, making it Europe's largest Turkish community outside of Turkey (Agence France Presse, Deutsche Presse-Agentur, 09/30/97).
Oct 30, 1997 The German Parliament debates a proposal that would automatically grant dual citizenship to non-Germans born in the country. The measure is being opposed by many in the ruling coalition government including Chancellor Helmut Kohl who has claimed that the change would double the number of Turks in Germany, resulting in a Turkish population of 6 million (Guardian, 10/30/97). Almost 15% of all births in Germany, that is, more than 100,000 children, are born as foreigners each year. In 1993, 45,000 people or 0.65% of the immigrant population were granted citizenship. The "foreign" share of the population is reported to be growing due to demographic factors and a low birth rate among Germans. The Federal Office of Statistics estimates that foreigners will constitute 12% of the population by the year 2000. Immigrants are reported to pay some 1 billion pounds a year toward pension funds and almost 40 billion pounds yearly in taxes and social security contributions (Ibid).
Dec 17, 1997 The government reports that racism is surging in the former East Germany and that the internet is being used to stir ethnic violence. Right-wing groups have reportedly established "foreigner-free zones" which are advertised on various internet sites (International Herald Tribune, 12/17/97).
Jan 21, 1998 Authorities indicate that there were around 48,000 right-wing activists country-wide in 1997, marking the first increase since 1993. Nearly half of these people reside in east Germany where most acts of anti-foreigner violence have occurred even though foreigners only make up 1.5% of the local population. It is reported that large parts of eastern Germany are becoming de facto no-go regions for foreigners, left-wingers, gays and teenage punks, that is, for anyone who appears un-German. The state of Brandenburg, which surrounds Berlin, has established a 45-member commando squad to respond to emergency calls about neo-Nazi attacks. Immigrants make up 15-30% of the population of west German cities (Guardian, 01/21/98; Washington Post, 03/05/98). Officials also state that there were 5,173 radical right offenses in 1997, up 14% from 1996. Right-wing groups, they report, are becoming more dangerous due to more effective recruiting methods, improved organizational skills, the use of the internet to disseminate neo-Nazi propaganda, and their ability to obtain more sophisticated weapons (Ibid).
Mar 27, 1998 The lower house of parliament rejects a bill that would have allowed children born in Germany who had at least one immigrant parent who was also born in Germany to become German citizens and hold dual nationality (Agence France Presse, 03/27/98).
Apr 29, 1998 A Munich city official has ordered the expulsion of a Turkish juvenile delinquent and his parents. The Turkish youth is suspected of some 61 crimes. His parents are accused of failing to monitor their child. The order is the first of its kind and is part of various policy changes enacted by the conservative Christian Social Union which administers Bavaria (Munich is located in this region). The Christian Social Union cites a Bavarian police report that indicates that crime rates are three times higher among foreigners aged 14-17 than among Germans in the same age group (Agence France Presse, 04/29/98).
Jun 6, 1998 Some 50,000 Kurds march in Dortmund to press for a peaceful resolution of the Kurdish conflict in Turkey (Deutsche Presse-Agentur, 06/06/98).
Jul 4, 1998 The Economist reports that 46,300 Turks were granted German citizenship in 1996 in comparison to around 2000 in 1990 (07/04/98).
Aug 13, 1998 Germany bans two left-wing extremist Turkish groups, asserting that they are a threat to domestic security and public order. The two organizations are the Revolutionary People's Liberation Party/Front (DHKP-C) and the Turkish People's Liberation Party/Front-Revolutionary Left (THKP/-C-Devrimci Sol). The groups were formed in 1992 when they split from the Devrimci Sol organization. Their total membership is reported to be 1300. The government says the two groups have resorted to extortion and violence against Turks in Germany as part of their leadership battle (Deutsche Presse-Agentur, 08/13/98).
Oct 16, 1998 The new center-left government formed by the Social Democrats and the Green Party has proposed legislation to overhaul the country's citizenship laws. Under the proposal, immigrant children born in Germany will qualify for citizenship if one parent was under 14 years of age when they entered the country and they remained as a resident. Also, foreigners who have resided in Germany for eight years C or five years if they are under the age of 16 C will be able to obtain citizenship. The current qualifying period is 15 years. Dual citizenship will also be allowed. The changes could affect up to 3 of the 7.5 million population of foreigners, allowing most of them to vote for the first time. Some 160,000 Turks were eligible for vote in recent federal elections; most supported the Social Democrats and Chancellor-elect Gerhard Schroder. The proposal has drawn protests from the right (Guardian, 10/16/98).
Nov 13, 1998 Several hundred Kurds protest in Berlin and Dusseldorf following the arrest of PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan in Italy. The Kurdish Workers' Party (PKK )was banned in Germany in 1993. In January, authorities downgraded their assessment of the PKK from a "terrorist" to a "criminal" organization (Agence France Presse, 11/13/98).
Nov 18, 1998 Around 4000 Kurds march in Bonn against Ankara's attempts to have PKK leader Ocalan extradited to Turkey (Independent, 11/18/98).
Nov 20, 1998 Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder states that Germany has reached its limit as a country of immigration. He also indicates that quotas will not be used. In recent years, Germany accepted some 350,000 refugees from Bosnia, more than any other country (Agence France Presse, 11/20/98).
Nov 28, 1998 Twenty thousand Turks demonstrate in Berlin, Bonn, Munich, and Nuremberg to support the extradition of PKK leader Ocalan to stand trial in Turkey. They also accuse the government of cowardice in not seeking his extradition. Germany also has an outstanding warrant for his arrest. The previous day, some 10,000 Kurds marched in Bonn to press for Ocalan's release from detention in Italy (Deutsche Presse-Agentur, 11/28/98).
Jan 24, 1999 The opposition Christian Democratic Union officially launches a nationwide petition against a government proposal that would change Germany's citizenship laws and allow for dual citizenship (Deutsche Presse-Agentur, 01/24/99).
Feb 16, 1999 Kurdish protestors storm and occupy Greek embassies and consulates in Germany and other European states following reports that Greece helped to ensure the seizure of PKK leader Ocalan in Kenya. Ocalan was taken to Turkey (Deutsche Presse-Agentur, 02/16/99).
Feb 17, 1999 Five arson attacks against Turkish property are reported in Germany (Agence France Presse, 02/17/99).
Feb 18, 1999 3 Kurdish demonstrators are killed and 16 wounded by Israeli guards following a scuffle in front of the Israeli consulate in Berlin. The Kurds accuse the Israelis of helping Turkey to detain PKK leader Ocalan while he was in Kenya. Some 20 PKK members also temporarily occupy the offices of the Social Democrat Party in Hamburg (Independent, 02/18/99).
Feb 19, 1999 Kurdish protestors throw petrol bombs at a Turkish cultural center in Heilbronn and attack visitors with baseball bats. Bombs are also used to attack two Turkish travel agencies in Bremen. The government vows to clamp down on the PKK; arrest warrants are issued for some 28 demonstrators (Independent, International Herald Tribune, 02/19/99). Meanwhile, authorities state that Israeli security forces are not to blame for the deaths of 3 Kurdish protestors during a February 18 incident (Agence France Presse, 02/19/99).
Feb 24, 1999 Some 10,000 people hold a procession to mourn three Kurds killed by Israeli security forces on February 18 (Deutsche Presse-Agentur, 02/24/99).
Mar 25, 1999 3 policemen are injured and 30 Turks arrested following clashes in Cologne between security forces and Turks who were protesting the arrest of a fellow Turk (Deutsche Presse-Agentur, 03/25/99).

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