The fight on Sunday underlines the difficulties Germany faces in handling hundreds of thousands of migrants. Although incidents in such centres are common, the chaos in the shelter at Berlin’s disused Tempelhof airport was more violent than normal.
“There were apparently many hundreds of people involved,” a police spokesman said. An unspecified number of arrests were made.
Michael Elias, who is in charge of the shelter, said 830 people were housed at the facility and that between 20 and 30 started the disruption. “It’s the simple fact that there are a lot of young men travelling alone here. We withdrew … because the situation simply exploded. It was a complete blow-out,” he said.