Czech Republic Officials Mark Arms and Hands of Migrants, Drawing Criticism

“Czech Republic Criticized After Officers Mark Migrants With Numbers,” by Dan Bilefsky for the New York Times:

Human rights advocates and Jewish groups expressed outrage on Thursday after the authorities in the Czech Republic wrote numbers on the skin of migrants who were pulled off trains earlier this week, a move they said summoned memories of the Nazi era.

The Czech officers, who used felt-tip pens to write the numbers on the hands of some among more than 200 mostly Syrian migrants at Breclav railway station on Tuesday, were apparently unaware of the historical resonance with World War II, when Nazis wrote serial numbers on the arms of Jews at concentration camps.

The Czech government said Thursday it had abandoned the practice, but the dehumanizing treatment of migrants has come under criticism by human rights groups at a time when countries across Europe have grappled with a response to the migration crisis in the face of the rise of far-right anti-immigrant parties that have demonized migrants…

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