Massive brawl erupts at Germany refugee shelter

A brawl involving “many hundreds of people” erupted Sunday at a Berlin refugee shelter, and more than 100 German police officers were called to the scene.

Michael Elias, who is in charge of the shelter at Berlin's now-defunct Tempelhof airport, told Reuters that 20 to 30 people started the disruption, which occurred while lunch was being served. The shelter houses 830 people, he added.

"There were apparently many hundreds of people involved," a police spokesman told Reuters. Authorities made an unspecified number of arrests.

"It's the simple fact that there are a lot of young men traveling alone here,” Elias said. “We withdrew... because the situation simply exploded. It was a complete blowout."

Police had been called to another shelter in Berlin earlier in the day after similar violence forced 500 inhabitants to flee the area, Reuters reported.

Germany’s federal employment agency said Monday that the increase in refugees flowing into the country could be tied to a sharp rise in demand for security guards in the social and public sectors.

"This increase may be linked in particular to the large demand for workers to help manage refugees," the agency said.

Germany expects more than 1 million asylum seekers, while more than 690 attacks, including acts of arson, have been carried out on refugee centers so far this year, compared to 198 for all of last year, Reuters reports.