Germany’s immigrants are fed up with Roland Koch, whose bid for reelection as governor of the state of Hesse is exacerbating racial tensions, Der Spiegel reports. Koch seized upon a December subway beating to blast "criminal young foreigners," and the rhetoric quickly escalated to anti-immigrant rant, portraying them as barely civilized brutes. A coalition of more than 100 immigrant groups has responded with an angry open letter.
The letter—sent today to Koch and Chancellor Angela Merkel, both members of the conservative Christian Democrats—accuses the governor of “feeding prejudice." Last summer Merkel sponsored an "Integration Summit," an effort undermined by her backing of Koch, an immigrant leader says. "Using minorities as scapegoats is nothing new. Koch is running a witch hunt. I hope it will become a problem for him."