German intelligence chief: Number of Islamist radicals ‘at an all-time high’

Number of Islamist radicals ‘at an all-time high’, warns German intelligence chief:

German intelligence chief Hans-Georg Maassen has said that the security services are facing a record numer of Islamists. The news comes as world leaders announce the defeat of ISIS in Iraq and Syria, potentially prompting an exodus of fighters.

The number of Islamist sympathizers is at an “an all-time high”, Maassen, the president of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV), said on Sunday. The number has gone up from 9,700 to 10,800 over the past year, with the fundamentalists increasingly abandoning radicalization in mosques in favor of “small conspiratorial circles, primarily on the internet,” which is proving a “particular challenge” for the security services. The splitting up of Islamist groups into smaller factions has also made them more difficult to monitor, Maassen added.

Salafists follow an ultra-conservative, fundamentalist interpretation of Islam, and Salafist organizations such as Hizb ut-Tahrir see Western-style democracy as incompatible with the rule of God, instead seeking to live under Sharia law. This might not necessarily make them prone to terrorism or violence, but their beliefs provide the spiritual basis for groups like al-Qaeda and Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS).

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German Intelligence (BfV) Warns of Massive Increase In Radical Islamists

The Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV), Germany’s domestic intelligence service, warns that the number of radical Islamists has grown enormously in the last four years.

Since 2013, the number of Islamists has skyrocketed from a mere 100 or so to over 1,600 currently. Chief of the BfV, Hans-Georg Maassen, said the number is increasing more and more every month. Mr Maassen described the current situation saying: “We receive between two and four credible tips on planned terrorist activity in Germany each day,” and added, “We have to recognise that we are living in a different situation now than was normal,”

Mr Maassen described the current situation saying: “We receive between two and four credible tips on planned terrorist activity in Germany each day,” adding: “We have to recognise that we are living in a different situation now than was normal,” Deutsche Welle reports.

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