Politicians have long been calling for a ban on the association that supports the Blue Mosque in Hamburg. Evidence has now been seized during searches in several federal states.
The police searched properties in seven federal states as part of investigations against the “Islamic Center Hamburg” (IZH). The Federal Ministry of the Interior announced on Thursday that the IZH is suspected of acting against the constitutional order and the idea of international understanding. The security authorities also investigated the suspicion that the association supported activities of the pro-Iranian Shiite terrorist organization Hezbollah from Lebanon. The investigation could result in a ban from the association.
Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD) said that the IZH had been monitored by the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution for a long time and was classified as Islamist. She emphasized: “Especially now, at a time when many Jews feel particularly threatened, the following applies: We generally do not tolerate Islamist propaganda or anti-Semitic and anti-Israel incitement.”
The center is seen as an extension of the Iranian regime, which congratulated the Islamist Hamas on its attack on Israel and described it as a “turning point in the continuation of armed resistance.”
Searches also in other federal states
According to the information, objects in Hamburg, Lower Saxony, Hesse, Baden-Württemberg, Bavaria, Berlin and North Rhine-Westphalia were searched early in the morning. In a statement from the ministry it was said that the activities of the IZH, which is responsible for the Imam Ali Mosque in Hamburg, were “aimed at spreading the revolutionary concept of the supreme (Iranian) leaders, which is suspected of being against the constitutional order in Germany and the idea of international understanding”. The investigators are also reportedly looking at accounts. Since there is currently no ban on associations, no money has been confiscated.
According to the ministry, the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution not only keeps an eye on the activities in the Hamburg facility, also known as the Blue Mosque, but also assumes that the IZH “exercises great influence on certain mosques and clubs, up to complete control.” An anti-Semitic and anti-Israel attitude is often evident within these circles, the statement said. An eyewitness said that more than 30 personnel carriers drove up to the Blue Mosque on the Alster in the darkness early on Thursday morning. In Frankfurt am Main, the police went to the “Center for Islamic Culture Frankfurt”.
“Real danger” for Jewish community
The American Jewish Committee Berlin welcomed the measures against the IZH and its environment. “The mullah regime is spreading its anti-Semitic, Islamist, homophobic and misogynistic ideology through its propaganda institutions and structures in Germany and represents a real danger to the Jewish community as well as opposition members, Kurds and other minorities in this country,” it said Notice.
A week ago, Faeser said in the Bundestag that bans on the Islamist Hamas movement and the Samidoun network had recently come into force. She dissolved the German branch of Samidoun. She then added: “We are already working on further bans.” Some opposition domestic politicians had criticized the fact that there were no searches of suspected supporters of these associations parallel to the ban.
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