Germany arson attack destroys planned asylum shelter

Berlin, Aug 25 (IANS) A school sports hall intended as a temporary shelter for asylum seekers in Germany was destroyed in a suspected arson attack on Tuesday, the media reported.

Investigators believe the fire in Nauen, west of Berlin, was started deliberately. No-one was injured, BBC reported.

The blaze gutted the gymnasium – part of a vocational school – in the early hours of Tuesday.

The building was due to house some 130 people applying for asylum in Germany, sources said.

Police said it was “highly unlikely” that the fire was caused by a technical default and instead were treating it as an arson attack.

Dietmar Woidke, state premier for Brandenburg where Nauen is located, on Tuesday promised a zero tolerance approach to “any form of xenophobia”.

Vowing to bring the fire’s perpetrators to justice, he said actions against refugees and asylum seekers were “shameful and unworthy of Germany”.

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