Teen refugee who wept at Merkel remark wins longer stay

Reem Sahwil. ( Henning Kaiser, dpa via AP)
Reem Sahwil. ( Henning Kaiser, dpa via AP)

Frankfurt - A teenage Palestinian asylum seeker who broke down in tears after a blunt remark from Chanceller Angela Merkel has won permission to stay in Germany for another year.

Germany's Bild newspaper reported that Reem Sahwil and her family had received an extension through March 2017 due to good integration into society. Bild cited unnamed immigration officials in the town of Rostock in northeast Germany.

During a town hall-style meeting in July, Merkel brought the 14-year-old to tears after she said her family had been waiting four years for permanent residence status.

Merkel told her Germany can't accommodate everyone, but outlined her government's desire to speed up asylum applications. Merkel's remark and awkward attempt to comfort the girl was criticised by opposition politicians, but she later said she appreciated Merkel's honesty.

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