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After two incendiary attacks during the weekend and another against a Turkish cultural association, suspicions are no longer directed only to the extreme right, but also to militants of Kurdish origin.
The fire, apparently premeditated, in a mosque in Berlin during the early hours of Sunday (12.03.2018) adds the deliberate attack number 24 against Muslim religious centers so far this year in Germany, according to a press release from the Turkish Union. Islamic Religious Affairs (Ditib, for its acronym in Turkish). This grouping, which represents 900 Turkish Islamic associations in Germany and approximately 70% of Muslims residing in the country. He called on the German authorities to guarantee protection to Muslim places of worship, to investigate the authorship of these attacks and to bring the perpetrators to justice.
The association warned that it was “a matter of time” that someone was injured and accused German politicians and society of keeping silent about discrimination and daily attacks directed against Muslims. Ditib, an organization close to the Turkish government, says that this silence has been interpreted as a tacit tolerance of their actions by extreme right extremists and “branches of foreign terrorist groups.” With this expression he indirectly points out Kurdish militants.
Police said the mosque in the Reinickendorf district of Berlin was set on fire by three teenagers. No one was injured, but the administrators of the mosque explain that the entire interior of the building was destroyed. “According to the first signs, we started with an attack with political motivations,” the police said in a statement, which states that the unit of the Berlin Criminal Investigation Office (LKA) in charge of investigating this type of crime has taken over the investigation. Police said that some witnesses heard around 2:00 am (01:00 GMT) glass noise and saw three young suspects fleeing from the scene.
In separate incidents, incendiary bombs were thrown at an association of Turkish immigrants in the western city of Meschede, also on Sunday, and another on Friday at a mosque belonging to the Islamic community Milli Görü in Lauffen, southern Germany, which could be suffocated without help by the temple’s own imam. No one was injured in those attacks, which are still being investigated.
The German Ministry of the Interior recently published figures showing that around 950 anti-Muslim crimes were carried out in Germany in 2017. Many of these crimes were committed by right-wing elements. German police are also looking for possible political motives behind the latest mosque attacks, amid growing anger among the Kurdish community in Turkey’s military offensive against the Afrin region controlled by the Kurds in northern Syria.