- The Washington Times - Monday, February 1, 2016

Germany’s first shelter for gay and lesbian refugees opened Monday in Nuremberg following increasing reports of abuse amid the country’s record-setting immigration.

The new shelter can house up to eight migrants, according to Michael Glas, who runs an association called Fliederlich that started the initiative, Agence France-Presse reported.

“No one has moved in yet but it’s a question of a day or two, the accommodation is ready,” Mr. Glas told AFP. “Four people from Iran, Iraq, Syria and Ethiopia have made requests” for a bed in the “small two-story house.”

The association decided to open the shelter after being contacted by 20 refugees who said they felt threatened in overcrowded shelters.

Fliederlich Chairman Ralpf Hoffmann said gay and lesbian refugees come under “constant stress,” because some Muslims “see the presence of homosexual or transsexual people in the lodging as an affront.”

“Prejudices don’t disappear when one crosses the borders,” Mr. Glas said.

Berlin-based gay rights organization Schwulenberatung also announced plans for an LGBT asylum shelter in the city, which would house 125 people, International Business Times reported.

“We have heard a lot of stories about discrimination and crimes against LGBT people in the last two years,” said Schwulenberatung manager Stephan Jakel. “They were frightened and scared after being beaten or spat on, and one survived a murder attempt. We heard a lot of horrible stories.”

No data is available on the number of attacks against homosexual refugees across the country, but the Lesbian and Gay Federation in Germany said it had recorded 95 cases last year between Aug. 1 to Dec. 31, including physical violence, sexual attacks and threats, AFP reported.

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