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Germany: Islamist costs millions to taxpayers

Magdeburg. The 2,000 inhabitants of a village in Anhalt-Bitterfeld are presented with a bizarre picture almost every day. When the 19-year-old Syrian Ayman N. wants to go shopping in town, four plainclothes police officers follow him with two vehicles a few meters apart. He is not allowed to leave his accommodation any further than the supermarket. This is also controlled by an electronic ankle cuff on his leg.

This has been the case since 2017. According to Volksstimme, 95,000 man-hours are said to have been incurred for guarding. At an hourly rate of 52 euros per civil servant, that amounts to almost five million euros. Vehicle costs or other material resources have not been included. Four men are currently supposed to be used for surveillance per shift, i.e. twelve officers per day. Most of them come from Magdeburg. Reason for the effort: The young man is classified as an Islamist threat and is waiting for his trial to continue before the Berlin Supreme Court.

Instructions for Kalashnikov
In August 2017, the Halle Regional Court had initially opened the process for "preparing a serious, state-endangering act of violence". The IS sympathizer, who entered the country as an unaccompanied minor refugee in autumn 2015, lived in the Osternienburger Land until January 2017 and made contact with like-minded people on the Internet. According to the prosecution, he had instructions for the manufacture of an AK 47 (Kalashnikov) assault rifle sent to him and asked in a chat where weapons can be obtained and how an explosive belt can be made. The Syrian also claimed to a secretly working constitutional protection officer that he was planning “something bigger”. There was talk of an attack in Berlin.

After the third closed day of the hearing in September 2017, the regional court declared that it was no longer responsible and referred the case to the Berlin Regional Court. The reason: There were new allegations regarding membership of a foreign terrorist group. But the Berlin Chamber of Commerce also temporarily suspended the proceedings after the fourth day of the hearing in December. Court spokeswoman Lisa Jani explained that “follow-up investigations were still necessary.” The general public prosecutor in Naumburg is now responsible. Its spokesman, Klaus Tewes, confirms: "When the investigations can be concluded is still open." The "surveillance" is a purely police measure to avert danger.

The Interior Ministry does not want to comment on the case. The police unions are annoyed at the constant use. Country chief of the police union (GdP), Uwe Bachmann, speaks of an "extremely unfortunate thing". His colleague from the German Association of Detective Officers, Peter Meißner said that "we can't watch him forever."

In 2018, the German intelligence was monitoring 90 mosque communities, especially Arabian-speaking communities for their connections to terrorism and other criminal activities. Each individual who is considered a threat is monitored 24 hours a day by 4 officers in 8-hour shifts. Germany now has more than 1,000 Hezbollah and 300 Hamas members operating freely across Germany, the 2019 annual report of the German domestic intelligence agency shows.

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