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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Nazis Knife Teenager in Wheelchair

BERLIN -- Three neo-Nazi skinheads carved a swastika into the cheek of a 17-year-old girl in a wheelchair after she refused their order to shout fascist slogans, German police said.

The assailants allegedly attacked the victim with a knife Monday after she emerged from a public toilet for the handicapped in the eastern city of Halle, about 200 kilometers southwest of Berlin, a police spokesman said.

After she refused the attackers' demand that she shout "Gas the cripples!" and "Foreigners out!" the three cut a crude swastika in the left side of her face, according to Police Chief G--nter Hermann.

Reports of the attack sparked outrage from handicapped groups and politicians across Germany. As part of the wave of rightist violence plaguing the country since reunification in 1990, scores of people who use wheelchairs or are otherwise disabled have been attacked or harassed.

Government statistics indicate that of 2,456 acts of rightist violence in 1992 -- a 30-fold increase in a decade -- about 90 percent of the victims were foreigners and the remaining 10 percent "leftists, homosexuals and disabled persons."

In the Halle incident, the victim suffered a cut measuring roughly 4 centimeters by 3 centimeters, which "will be visible for quite a while," police spokesman Ralf Berger said.

Authorities said that they are looking for two young men, aged 18 to 20, and a female accomplice, 15.