Suspected far-right extremists emailed a bomb threat to Berlin’s prominent Şehitlik Mosque on Monday.
Mosque officials told Anadolu Agency (AA) that they immediately informed the police after receiving an email from the far-right terrorist group Combat 18 that claimed that the group had planted plastic explosives in the mosque complex. “Today some bombs will explode in the mosque,” the mail read, sent by “firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Rıfkı Olgun Yücekök, the Turkish consul general in Berlin, urged German authorities to take stronger measures to protect the mosques.
"This may turn out to be a hoax but still it’s an attempt to disrupt peace and social cohesion,” he stressed, adding that they expect German authorities to identify those behind such threats and bring them to justice. “We don’t have the luxury to ignore this.”
The Şehitlik Mosque, which belongs to the Turkish-Islamic Union for Religious Affairs (DITIB), is a well-known Muslim place of worship in the capital.
Two days before this incident the Yeşil Mosque in the German city Menden received a threat as well. A criminal complaint was filed.
In recent months, dozens of mosques across Germany received bomb threats, sparking worries among the country’s Muslim population.
The country has witnessed growing Islamophobia in recent years, triggered by the propaganda of far-right parties.
Last year, more than 100 mosques and religious institutions were attacked.
Police recorded 813 hate crimes against Muslims last year, including insults, threatening letters and physical assaults. At least 54 Muslims were injured in the attacks.
Germany, a country of over 81 million people, has the second-largest Muslim population in Western Europe after France. Among the country’s nearly 4.7 million Muslims, 3 million are of Turkish origin.
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