5-month-old baby targeted in racist shooting in Germany's Lower Saxony
According to a report published by German media outlet Der Spiegel, four Ivorian refugees including a five-month-old infant were targeted in an apparently racist shooting in the small town Schoeningen in Lower Saxony. The suspects fired several shots from the balcony of an apartment at a group of refugees that were walking on a nearby street.
Police said in a statement that the refugees and their baby, who were from Ivory Coast, were managed to escape unhurt with the help of two passersby.
The four suspects, aged between 29 and 52, were under the influence of alcohol, according to the initial tests.
"The investigators are probing a xenophobic motive behind the crime," the statement said.
Germany has witnessed growing xenophobia and anti-migrant hatred in recent years, fueled by the propaganda of neo-Nazi groups and the far-right Islamophobic Alternative for Germany (AfD) party.
The police recorded more than 19,000 far-right crimes in 2018, according to the latest government figures, with extremists committing some 1,000 violent attacks against foreigners, immigrants or political rivals.
Almost 500 people were injured in attacks inspired by far-right ideologies.