ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – A failed Iraqi Kurdish asylum seeker in Germany has confessed to a court that he murdered a German teen, but denied charges that he raped her.
“My vision went black and then it happened,” Ali Bashar, 22, told a German court on Tuesday. “I don’t know how it could have happened.”
Prosecutors in Germany charged Bashar in January for beating and raping 14-year-old Susanna Feldman on May 23, 2018. His trial began on March 11.
The Feldman murder, dubbed the “Susanna Case,” sparked controversy across Germany regarding the country’s migrant policy. Millions of immigrants from various countries have come to Germany since a 2015 decision to open the border to refugees fleeing Syria and other nations, and it has become a hot-button issue, further dividing an already partisan and hostile political environment in the country.
Following the murder, Bashar fled Germany to the Kurdistan Region before police in the Duhok governorate arrested him after Berlin issued an arrest warrant. He later admitted to Kurdish authorities that he killed Feldman.
Duhok city police chief Tariq Ahmed told Kurdistan 24 in June that the suspect had confessed to murdering Feldman following interrogation by Kurdish security authorities.
According to Ahmed, Bashar and the German teen were friends who were “on a trip to the woods” where “they consumed a lot of alcohol and drugs” before getting into an argument, during which the girl tried to call the police.
Fearing a severe charge if the police showed up since Feldman was under 18, Ahmed said the Bashar “choked her and buried her beneath the dirt.”
After his confession, the Iraqi Kurdish man was deported back to Germany and taken to a Frankfurt jail.
Although Bashar denies that he raped the 14-year-old, an autopsy of Feldman’s body revealed signs of a violent and sexual attack.
The trial is expected to last until May as the 22-year-old is also charged with the rape of an 11-year-old at a refugee home where he lived in Wiesbaden, western Germany.
Editing by John J. Catherine