Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.
Friday, October 28, 2016

BERLIN (Reuters) — Germany has translated the first 20 articles of the country’s constitution, which outline basic rights like freedom of speech, into Arabic for refugees to help them integrate.

Germany is struggling to cope with an expected influx of some 800,000 people this year, both economic migrants and asylum seekers fleeing war in the Middle East and Africa.

Aside from the cost and practicalities of looking after so many people — almost one percent of Germany’s population — many voters are worried about how they will integrate into society.

Vice-Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel, also chairman of the center-left Social Democrats (SPD), told Bild daily that refugees were welcome but that they have to make an effort to fit in.

“People who come here must not only learn the German language, but also learn the rules of the game of living together,” Gabriel told the newspaper.

“I am convinced that the first 20 articles of our constitution are what shape our culture,” he said, adding Germany had printed 10,000 copies for distribution among refugees at registration centers.

Germany’s “Basic Law” was adopted in 1949 and sets out the principles which underpin the legal system and the division of power between central government and 16 regional states.

“No one is forced, when he comes to Germany, to change his religion, to alter his private life. But what is important for our culture is that the principles of our democratic society apply to everyone,” Gabriel added.

Refugees had to accept principles such as the division of church and state, equal rights for men and women, the right to be homosexual and freedom of expression, he said. He also pointed out that anti-Semitism is not tolerated in Germany.

(Reporting by Madeline Chambers; Editing by Keith Weir)

Photo: Migrants arrive to the main railway station in Munich, Germany, September 1, 2015. REUTERS/Lukas Barth

  • Dominick Vila

    Can anyone imagine anything like that happening in the USA? Articles of impeachment, calls for summary execution, and evidence of Sharia Law would dominates our conversations, the airwaves, and would likely resurrect the dead.

    • CPAinNewYork

      You are so full of crap. I think that you’re a bored old man who retired to his personal computer so that he can spend wasted hours inveighing against the white people of America.

  • yabbed

    So, we print our Founding Documents in Spanish for our immigrants. We give the citizenship oath in Spanish.

  • Otto Greif

    They don’t care about German beliefs, customs, or laws. German schools near migrant centers have had to warn girls to “cover up” and not to dress “provocatively” because so the migrants don’t attack and rape them.

    • Sand_Cat

      Let us hope this won’t be tolerated.