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German official vows to tighten asylum center safeguards after guards allegedly abuse refugees

  • Refugees line up to apply for asylum at the reception center in Berlin, Germany, Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2014. A top government official says all personnel working for security companies at asylum centers will have to undergo a police background screening before working with refugees. The interior minister of North Rhine-Westphalia Ralf Jaeger on Tuesday announced the new measure after allegations surfaced over the weekend that private security guards had repeatedly abused refugees at an asylum center in Burbach in western Germany. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

    Refugees line up to apply for asylum at the reception center in Berlin, Germany, Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2014. A top government official says all personnel working for security companies at asylum centers will have to undergo a police background screening before working with refugees. The interior minister of North Rhine-Westphalia Ralf Jaeger on Tuesday announced the new measure after allegations surfaced over the weekend that private security guards had repeatedly abused refugees at an asylum center in Burbach in western Germany. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)  (The Associated Press)

  • Refugees are waiting to apply for asylum at the reception center in Berlin, Germany, Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2014. A top government official says all personnel working for security companies at asylum centers will have to undergo a police background screening before working with refugees. The interior minister of North Rhine-Westphalia Ralf Jaeger on Tuesday announced the new measure after allegations surfaced over the weekend that private security guards had repeatedly abused refugees at an asylum center in Burbach in western Germany. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)

    Refugees are waiting to apply for asylum at the reception center in Berlin, Germany, Tuesday, Sept. 30, 2014. A top government official says all personnel working for security companies at asylum centers will have to undergo a police background screening before working with refugees. The interior minister of North Rhine-Westphalia Ralf Jaeger on Tuesday announced the new measure after allegations surfaced over the weekend that private security guards had repeatedly abused refugees at an asylum center in Burbach in western Germany. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber)  (The Associated Press)

A German official says he's tightening checks on security personnel at asylum centers following allegations that private guards repeatedly abused refugees.

Authorities in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany's most populous state, raided an asylum center last week after a local journalist received a DVD showing guards abusing an asylum seeker. Allegations have since surfaced of abuse at two other facilities.

State interior minister Ralf Jaeger said Tuesday that from now on all people deployed to asylum centers by security firms will first have to undergo a police background screening.

Jaeger said that although refugee arrivals in Germany have increased sharply in recent months and local communities are facing challenges to provide accommodation, "we will not allow people who have come here seeking shelter from persecution and war to be abused."