The Chinese visitors at the world fair have repeatedly tried to muscle their way into Germany’s €50-million exhibition structure after hours of standing in line, causing the Germans to send a letter of protest to expo organisers demanding additional security, daily Süddeutsche Zeitung reported on Tuesday.
“I have personally observed workers at our pavilion suffer unbearable behaviour from the visitors, including shocking insults and physical attacks,” general commissioner for the German pavilion Dietmar Schmitz wrote on May 2.
He has not received an answer from the Chinese, he told the paper.
The skirmishes reportedly began on one of the first days of the expo, which runs from May 1 to October 31. On that day a long line of people, including some in wheelchairs, became enraged with delays and began tearing flowers out of the ground and throwing them at the pavilion.
Some shouted “na cui, na cui,” which the paper said was Chinese for “Nazi, Nazi,” Schmitz confirmed.
“I don’t think the Chinese even know what they shouting,” Schmitz he told the paper.
Workers at the German site have called Chinese emergency services on several occasions to break up fights and control the crowd, press spokeswoman Marion Conrady told the paper, adding that for several days more security forces have been patrolling the area.
Such skirmishes have also occurred at the English and Swiss pavilions, the paper said.
In the meantime, the German pavilion instituted a new ticket system for those in wheelchairs to bypass long lines.
The theme of the exposition is “Better City – Better Life,” and is the most expensive in world fair history. More than 190 countries are taking part.
Germany’s pavilion is called “Balancity,” which is meant to signify a city in balance with “renewal and preservation, innovation and tradition, urbanity and nature, community and individual development and work and leisure” through thematic urban spaces.