Support for Merkel plummets after violent attacks in Germany

German public support for the policies of Chancellor Angela Merkel plummeted by 12 percentage points in August, according to a survey conducted after a series of violent attacks rattled the country.

Support for Merkel fell to a six-month low of 47 per cent in August from 59 per cent in July, according to the Deutschlandtrend poll conducted each month on behalf of public broadcaster ARD.

A series of high-profile attacks over the course of a single week last month raised questions about the chancellor's open-door refugee policy. Three of four attacks were carried out by asylum seekers, and two of them were claimed by the Islamic State extremist group.

Merkel delivered a staunch defence of her policies during an annual press conference last week, insisting she was right to allow hundreds of thousands of migrants and refugees to arrive last summer.

The poll, which surveyed a representative sample of 1,003 people on August 1-2, also showed a rise in support for Bavarian Prime Minister Horst Seehofer, who has repeatedly criticized Merkel for her promise of sanctuary to refugees.

Merkel's ratings dipped earlier this year amid concerns about criminal asylum seekers, but public approval soared again after Britain's vote to leave the European Union in June and a coup attempt in Turkey last month.

Last update: Thu, 04/08/2016 - 17:10

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