Germany bans three Salafist groups as anti-democratic

BERLIN Wed Mar 13, 2013 9:54am EDT

German Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich arrives for a session of the lower house of parliament, Bundestag, in Berlin November 8, 2012. REUTERS/Thomas Peter

German Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich arrives for a session of the lower house of parliament, Bundestag, in Berlin November 8, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Thomas Peter

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BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany on Wednesday banned three ultra-conservative Salafist Muslim groups which the Interior Ministry said wanted to overturn democracy and install a system based on sharia, or Islamic law.

The ban, which took effect in the western states of Hesse and North Rhine-Westphalia in the early morning, is the latest step taken by German authorities who have increased surveillance of Salafists who espouse a radical version of Islam.

The ministry said it has banned the organizations "DawaFFM" and "Islamische Audios", as well as "An-Nussrah", which is part of the "Millatu Ibrahim" group that was outlawed in June.

Some 20 people were searched and assets belonging to the organizations were seized, said the ministry.

"Salafism, as represented in the associations that were banned today, is incompatible with our free democratic order," Interior Minister Hans-Peter Friedrich said in a statement.

"(The groups) aim to change our society in an aggressive, belligerent way so that democracy would be replaced by a Salafist system, and the rule of law replaced by Sharia law."

Germany is home to roughly 4,000 Salafists. They make up only a tiny proportion of the total Muslim population of about 4 million.

Friedrich said the step was part of efforts by Chancellor Angela Merkel's center-right government to promote a tolerant and respectful relationship with the large number of peaceful Muslims in Germany.

Last year a series of violent clashes between police and Salafists, sometimes goaded by far-right anti-Islam protesters, near the western cities of Cologne and Bonn raised fears about growing militancy among an underclass of Muslim youths.

(Reporting by Madeline Chambers; Editing by Kevin Liffey)

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Comments (1)
JunkYardDog wrote:
This is a growing phenomenon globally, not just in Islamic countries. In Sweden, the UK, Australia – we’re seeing the beginning of radical Islamic malcontented evangelicals determined to foist their radical interpretations of the Koran on the rest of us.
In Toronto, Canada, there are already Islamic women cops, clad in burquas. The OIC is trying to ban all criticisms of Islam. We saw the street riots in London, Engalnd and Sydney. Australia over the crummy film about the life of Mohammed. Thankfully our security agencies have a close eye on the most dangerous ones, the young men who go back to Pakistan for terrorist training, in order to return to their host countries to bomb and kill us.

Mar 13, 2013 12:05am EDT  --  Report as abuse
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