The attacks included hate-based attacks on Christians and their institutions, including arson, graffiti and vandalism. In Germany, the situation is deteriorating with almost daily attacks, including reports of Church arson, desecration of cemeteries, and church buildings being daubed with blasphemous statements.
Austria is not immune, with dozens of attacks on property, as well as increasing attacks on Christian icons and ideals through art, the media and even legal discrimination. One of the worst cases occurred in June 2013 when the Salvatorian monastery of Hörbranz in Vorarlberg was raided by two masked gunmen. A monk was held at gunpoint. The men, allegedly in their 30’s, escaped with several thousand euros.
Dr. Gudrun Kugler, director of the Observatory, told The Local: "The increasingly secular society in Europe has less and less space for Christianity. Some governments and players of civil society seek to exclude instead of to accommodate. Countless cases of intolerance against Christians are reported to us. By researching, documenting and publishing these cases we hope to create an awareness which is a first step towards a remedy."