|Salafists protest outside Central Mosque (Zentralmoschee) in Cologne's |
Ehrenfeld district,, May 8, 2012 [AFP]
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. [Reuters]At the same time, German prosecutors said
Police have foiled an attempted attack by Islamists against far-right targets... Police made four arrests on Wednesday after making raids in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW). Prosecutors in Dortmund said that a raid in Bonn, carried out by special police force commandos, had uncovered a firearm and a kilogram of possible explosives. Arrests also took place in Leverkusen and Essen. Authorities said they believed "imminent" terrorist activities were in the pipeline. A specific attack had reportedly been planned against the leader of the far-right Pro-NRW political party, Markus Beisicht. In addition, said the prosecutors, a ticked list of Pro-NRW party officials and journalists was found. The arrests came in the wake of raids across the states of NRW and Hesse, with computer equipment, propaganda material, cell phones and over 10,000 euros ($13,000) in cash seized... [Deutsche Welle]Analysts of events in the Arab world and those parts of the world impacted by Arabs, Moslems and Islamist terror frequently refer to the Salafists. It is a slippery descriptor that sometimes produces contradictory outcomes. Wikipedia's definition of Salafist Jihadism includes these elements:
- The term Salafist jihadism describes the beliefs of Salafi Moslems who, starting in the mid-1990s, became interested in violent jihad.
- The salafis distinguish themselves from those they call the "sheikists", so named because... the "sheikists" had forsaken adoration of God for adoration of "the oil sheiks of the Arabian peninsula, with the Al Saud family at their head"...
- Even more dangerous [according to the Salafists] was the Muslim Brotherhood, who [are] excessively moderate and lacking in literal interpretation of holy texts.
- The number of Salafi jihadists in the world is less than one percent of the world's 1.9 billion Muslims [source] meaning fewer than 20 million people. (What's the fuss, right?)
In a coffee shop in Gaza, Muhammad Hijazi, an expert on Islamic and Salafist groups, explained that Salafist jihadism is a global phenomenon, not a local one. It moves from certain regions of tension to others. It moved from Afghanistan to Iraq, then to Libya. He noted that its mission, at the beginning of the '80s, was to fight the Soviet Union. However, after the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan, Salafist jihadism took its mission to the socialist South Yemen. After the region fell to North Yemen, the Salafist jihadists moved to Chechnya, Caucasia and Sudan, then to Algeria, Iraq and Libya and now Syria.Hijazi said the members are getting to Syria through Iraq and Turkey, since the border is open. Many of them are currently involved in Jabhat al-Nusra. Salafists in Jordan constitute around half of the total number of militants in Syria, amounting approximately to 4,000 fighters and residing in rural areas. Moreover, he noted that they are financed by Gulf and Islamic charities, especially in Saudi Arabia. The Wahhabi ideology intrinsically supports this dogma, while some countries, like Qatar, are using Salafists for political ends and jihadist purposes. Hijazi considered unofficial political oil money to be the biggest sponsor for such movements. Hijazi added that Salafists in Gaza are supported by an international network of small associations, whose mission is to offer logistical support. Those provide individuals with money and means to move to regions of tension. Through them, Salafists get salaries, visas and tickets and are directed to the conflict regions, where there is a political vacuum. The associations make sure to help them move around easily, and often, the countries that are the source of financing are aware of that. He said he considered Syria a favorable environment, where this trend that opposes the revolution’s principles of liberalism can constantly grow, as long as money and weapons are available. [Source: Al-Monitor]