Number of Islamists in Germany reaches record high, says intel report
Germany’s domestic intelligence agency, or BfV, has reported a significant rise in the number of Islamist extremists living in the country. Officially classified as Salafists, or radicalized Sunni Muslims, their numbers have reached a new all-time high according to the agency’s annual report issued on Tuesday.
The number of Islamists in the country has doubled in the past five years, crossing 10,800 individuals. This significant growth in the Islamist scene can be attributed to more than a million Arab and Muslim migrants taken in by the country since Chancellor Angela Merkel opened borders in the autumn of 2015.
According to the report, intelligence agencies are finding it increasingly hard to monitor and infiltrate Islamic groups as they increasingly revert to closed private circles and internet.
The 359-page intelligence report reviewed by Legal Insurrection links mass migration to Islamic terrorism and violent antisemitism, describing the trend as a “serious challenge to the free and tolerant coexistence” in Germany:
The number of Salafists in Germany has once again risen by 1000 persons in 2017, taking their total to 10,800; thus making Salafists the strongest Islamist group in terms of manpower. (…)
The basic acceptance of violence is an intrinsic part of the Salafist ideology. The recent analysis of terror attack in German and Europe shows that a Salafist radicalization often leads to acts of jihad. (…)
Antisemitism is a fundamental component of this ideology across the Islamist spectrum. Religious, territorial or national-political motives blend together in an antisemitic worldview that basically projects a “worldwide Jewish conspiracy. The Jews are seen as the masterminds of a global plot and collectively blamed for various ills and grievances. (…)
Antisemitic incidents linked to Islamism reviewed by the BfV point towards the fact that antisemitism incited by Islamist organizations pose a serious challenge to the free and tolerant coexistence in Germany. This is especially valid in the case of numerous migrants who have entered Germany. [Verfassungsschutzbericht2017; emphasis added; translation by the author]
In related news, a district court in Germany has told authorities to allow the terror suspect and former bodyguard of Osama bin Laden to return to the country, as he ‘could face torture or abuse’ in his native country of Tunisia. The former Al Qaeda operative was recently deported back to Tunisia after drawing €320,000 in welfare payments over the course of several years.
The German intelligence report also showed an increase in left-wing violence. Leftist extremists committed 1648 violent crimes in 2017, a year-on-year rise of 37 percent. A majority of these violent acts were directed at the police–a total of 1135 incidents including bodily harm, arson, and terrorism.
During the same period the right-wing violence went down by 35 percent, with 1054 reported acts of violence compared to 1600 in the previous year.
The official figures on right-wing crimes must, however, be treated with caution. There have been reports in the past that German authorities have been registering Islamist crimes as right-wing ones. According to a September 2017 report published in the Jerusalem Post, German Interior Ministry has been classifying antisemitic crimes committed by Islamic groups, such as the terrorist-outfit Hezbollah, as ‘far-right’ violence.
Germany is home to 950 members of the Iran-backed Hezbollah terrorist militia, as well as 320 belonging to Hamas, a Muslim Brotherhood-linked Palestinian terrorist group.
The intelligence report did not specify the number of ISIS or Al Qaeda members in the country, citing unavailability of reliable data. But in its newsletter issued earlier this week, the agency raised serious concerns over the return of large numbers of women and children belonging to ISIS fighters of German origin to the country. Merkel government had negotiated a deal with the Iraqi government and Kurdish authorities to bring back ISIS family members on account of ‘humanitarian considerations’ and ‘Germany’s duty to protect its citizens.’ This policy will result in “growing number of radicalized minors in the coming years,’ the newsletter of the German domestic spy agency predicted.