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'I no longer feel secure' in Germany, Syrian refugee says
Berlin (CNN)Hands trembling, face panic-stricken, Fares Naem recalls the night he tried to stop a far-right attack -- only to become its target. The Syrian refugee was on a tram in central Berlin when he spotted two white men hurling abuse at a black passenger.
"I could not keep silent," he says. "What really shocked me was that no one did anything. I simply felt I had to say something."
Naem began filming the confrontation on his mobile phone -- drawing the attention, and the anger, of the man's attackers. In retaliation, they turned on him.
When he tried to flee at the next stop, the men dragged him behind a shop and assaulted him. Bloodied and beaten, he went into the store to ask for help, but says he was ignored.
Another man came to his aid. Naem says the man apologized, insisting, "Not all Germans are like that." But the attack left him scared.
"I lost my mobile phone. I was beaten. Especially psychologically, I was hurt," he says. "And that was difficult. It was not the physical assault that bothered me most, it was more that there are people out there who have racist ideas in their minds and that people did not help me."
Right-wing violence is on the rise in Germany. The country's Federal Bureau of Investigation (BKA) received more than 3,700 reports of attacks on asylum seekers and refugees in 2016, a dramatic increase of 200% from the year before. ... continued