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Iraqi failed asylum seeker returned to Germany on murder charge

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By Mark Armstrong
Murder suspect Ali Bashar is led away by police
Murder suspect Ali Bashar is led away by police

A 20-year-old Iraqi suspected of raping and killing a 14-year-old Jewish girl has been returned to Germany to face trial.

Ali Bashar, a failed asylum seeker, reportedly confessed to the crime after being detained by police in Iraqi Kurdistan.

Susanna Maria Feldman's body was found near the city of Wiesbaden last month. Her killing has reignited arguments over immigration policy in Germany.

"This is a request to all of us," said German Chancellor Angela Merkel. "Firstly, to take integration very seriously, to make our values clear again and again, but also to punish every crime in accordance with the law."

Feldman was reported missing on May 22. She had been sexually assaulted and strangled. Her body was found buried under brushwood not far from her hometown and near a refugee centre where the alleged attacker had lived, German police said.

An autopsy showed she had been the victim of a violent and sexual attack. Police said there was no evidence her religion had been a factor and the Central Council of Jews in Germany cautioned against attributing any anti-Semitic motive.

Angela Merkel's decision to admit large numbers of asylum seekers has already provoked a political backlash.