German Mayor Andreas Hollstein of Chancellor Angela Merkel's CDU party was stabbed in the neck at a kebab shop and was taken to the hospital. Hollstein is the conservative mayor of Altena, a town in North Rhine-Westphalia that is well known for accepting more than its fair share of immigrants.
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<span style="margin-top:15px;rgba(42,51,6,0.7);font-size:12px;">Credit: EPA</span>
NRW premier Armin Laschet says, "The security authorities believe that there was a political motive." Witnesses to the attack Monday night described hearing the assailant shouting criticism of the mayor's policy on asylum. A tweet from Merkel condemned the knife attack saying, "I am outraged by the knife attack on Mayor Andreas Hollstein, and very relieved that he is able to be back with his family. Thanks also to those who helped him."
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="de" dir="ltr">Kanzlerin <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Merkel?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Merkel</a>: „Ich bin entsetzt über den Messerangriff auf Bürgermeister Andreas Hollstein - und sehr erleichtert, dass er schon wieder bei seiner Familie sein kann. Dank auch an die, die ihm geholfen haben.“ <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Altena?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Altena</a></p>— Steffen Seibert (@RegSprecher) <a href="https://twitter.com/RegSprecher/status/935397683002519552?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 28, 2017</a></blockquote>
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The Christian Democrats have been under scrutiny since the poor performance in the September general election, critics largely attribute the negative impressions to Merkel's liberal immigration policy which fits nicely with her motto, "we can manage." Merkel has allowed more than a million migrants since Europe's 2015-2016 migrant crisis, many of which are Muslim.
The town of Altena has around 17,000 residents and won a national award for integrating migrants and putting them in normal apartment blocks rather than migrant hostels. 57-year-old Hollstein said in a news conference Tuesday it was the kebab shop owner, Demir Abdullah and his son who subdued the attacker. Hollstein added, "I'm sure that if they hadn't reacted like that I wouldn't be alive now."
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