A Month of Islam in Britain: May 2016 Child Sex Grooming, Prison Brainwashing and “Allah Knows Best” by Soeren Kern

  • “A Muslim man with way too many extremist links to be entirely coincidental is now the Mayor of London. … In a couple more decades Britain may well have its first Muslim Prime Minister. … Reality cannot argue with demographics, so the realistic future for Britain is Islamic.” — Paul Weston, British politician.

  • One-third of Muslim adults in Britain do not feel “part of British culture,” according to a new report on British multiculturalism. Nearly half (47%) of Muslims consider their Islamic faith to be the most important part of their identity.
  • The government was accused of burying a report on prison extremism which warns that staff have been reluctant to tackle Islamist behavior for fear of being labelled “racist,” according to the Sunday Times. Belmarsh, a maximum-security prison in London, has become “like a jihadi training camp,” according to testimony from a former inmate. There are more than 12,000 Muslims in prisons across England and Wales.
  • Former MP Ann Cryer suffered verbal abuse and was accused of “demonizing” the Asian community when she began a campaign more than a decade ago to get the authorities to tackle child sex grooming in Keighley.
  • “At the end of the assault, when Mr. Zimmerman was lying motionless and defenseless on the floor of the ticket hall, the defendant crouched over him and quite deliberately began to cut Mr. Zimmerman’s throat with a knife blade.” — Prosecutor in the attempted murder trial of Somalia-born Muhiddin Mire, who attacked a random stranger in the London Underground.

May 1. Mubashir Jamil, a 21-year-old man from Luton, was arrested on suspicion of attempting to travel to Syria and engage in “violent jihad” with the Islamic State. He was charged with “engaging in conduct in preparation for committing acts of terrorism.”

May 2. A senior British jihadi who boasted of recruiting hundreds of Britons for the Islamic State was killed in a drone strike in Syria, according to the Independent. Raphael Hostey, also known as Abu Qaqa al-Britani, left Manchester to join the Islamic State in 2013. The 23-year-old graphic designer became a key recruiter of British fighters and jihadi brides for the terror group and was also heavily involved in its propaganda. At least 700 people from the UK have travelled to support or fight for jihadist groups in Iraq and Syria.

May 4. The “Department of Theology” of the Blackburn Muslim Association ruled that it is “not permissible” for a woman to travel more than 48 miles — deemed to be the equivalent of three days walk — without her husband or a close male relative. The group also ruled that men must grow beards and women must cover their faces. The rulings were accompanied by the catchphrase: “Allah knows best.”

May 7. Labour Party politician Sadiq Khan was sworn in as mayor of London. He is the first Muslim to lead a major European capital. During the election campaign, Khan faced a steady stream of allegations about his past dealings with Muslim extremists and anti-Semites.

British politician Paul Weston warned that Khan’s rise is a harbinger of things to come:

“The previously unthinkable has become the present reality. A Muslim man with way too many extremist links to be entirely coincidental is now the Mayor of London. … In a couple more decades Britain may well have its first Muslim Prime Minister. … Reality cannot argue with demographics, so the realistic future for Britain is Islamic.”

May 7. Mohammed Shaheen, a 43-year-old father of seven, was sentenced to 16 years in prison for raping underage schoolgirls. Shaheen, an immigrant from Pakistan, told the court he was a devout Muslim who had been framed by his victims. Judge Martin Steiger QC said: “He masqueraded as religious when all along he was behaving in this hypocritical way.”

May 8. The Times reported that Britain’s biggest Muslim charity will brand hundreds of buses around the country during Ramadan with a slogan proclaiming glory to Allah. The initiative by Islamic Relief, a government-backed organization, is an attempt to “break down barriers” and portray Islam in a positive light. Islamic Relief has paid for hundreds of buses in Birmingham, Bradford Leicester, London and Manchester to carry advertisements with the slogan “Subhan Allah,” which means “Glory be to Allah” in Arabic.

May 8. Six Algerian terror suspects with links to al-Qaeda were allowed to stay in Britain after winning a protracted legal battle. The Special Immigration Appeals Commission (SIAC) ruled that there was a “real risk” the men would be tortured by the Algerian security services if they were deported. This would have violated Article 3 of the Human Rights Act, which guards against “torture or degrading or inhuman treatment.”

May 9. A Muslim man who was found guilty of threatening to behead a candidate of the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) had his sentence overturned on appeal. Aftab Ahmed, 45, had been found guilty of making threats to kill David Robinson-Young, but a Newcastle Crown Court judge said he believed that Ahmed did not intend to act on his threat.

May 10. The Greater Manchester Police (GMP) apologized for a counter-terrorism exercise in which a mock suicide bomber shouted “Allahu Akbar” (Allah is the Greatest). Eight hundred volunteers took part in the overnight drill to make it as realistic as possible. Manchester peace activist Erinma Bell criticized the use of a “Muslim terrorist.” She said “a terrorist can be anyone” and “we need to move away from stereotypes.” A local Muslim leader, Syed Azhar Shah, said it was “shocking to portray Muslims as terrorists” and accused the GMP of “institutional racism.” A statement released by GMP said:

“The scenario for this exercise is based on an attack by an extremist Daesh-style organization and the scenario writers have centered the circumstances around previous similar attacks of this nature, mirroring details of past events to make the situation as real life as possible for all of those involved. However, on reflection we acknowledge that it was unacceptable to use this religious phrase immediately before the mock suicide bombing, which so vocally linked this exercise with Islam. We recognize and apologize for the offense that this has caused.”

May 10. The trial began of three Muslims who plotted to behead British citizens after being inspired by an Islamic State order “to kill civilians everywhere in the West.” The court heard that Haseeb Hamayoon, 29, Yousaf Syed, 20, and his cousin Nadir Syed, 22, planned to carry out a terrorist atrocity after a fatwa was issued by Islamic State spokesman Abu-Mohammad al-Adnani. Hamayoon, who has a Pakistani passport, had bought a “Rambo First Blood II” hunting knife online using his wife’s bank account. British born Nadir Syed had stored images of Lee Rigby’s killers, and the three men had allegedly shared images of beheadings.

May 11. Prime Minister David Cameron apologized to Suliman Gani, a Muslim extremist, for saying he is a supporter of the Islamic State. Gani said accusations that he backs the Islamic State are defamatory and must be retracted. In a statement, Cameron said he was referring to reports that Gani supports “an” Islamic state rather than “the” Islamic State. The Muslim Council of Britain called on Cameron to repeat his apology in Parliament, and for an “urgent review” of Islamophobia in the Conservative party.

May 15. The BBC’s religious output is too Christian, an internal review concluded. A report by Aaqil Ahmed, the BBC’s head of religion and ethics, argued that that Muslim, Hindu and Sikh faiths should get more airtime. One Muslim leader suggested the review could lead to Friday prayers from a mosque being broadcast in the same way that Christian church services currently feature in the BBC’s programming. Ahmed’s appointment to the BBC in 2009 was controversial because of allegations he had shown a pro-Islam bias in his previous role at Channel 4, according to the Telegraph.

May 16. The government confirmed that Sharia-compliant student loans will be offered for the first time in Britain as part of an effort to boost the number of young Muslims applying to university. The new halal (permitted or lawful) finance model complies with Sharia law, which forbids Muslims from taking out loans on which they would be charged interest. In a white paper, the government said:

“We will introduce an alternative finance system to support the participation of students who, for religious reasons, might feel unable to take on interest-bearing loans…. To ensure participation and choice are open to all, we plan to legislate for the creation of an alternative model of student finance.”

May 17. One-third of Muslim adults in Britain do not feel “part of British culture,” according to a new report on British multiculturalism. Nearly half (47%) of Muslims consider their Islamic faith to be the most important part of their identity. Only half (54%) of British adults believe there are a set of values that all nationalities and religions in Britain can agree upon in the future.

May 17. Belmarsh, a maximum-security prison in London, has become “like a jihadi training camp,” according to testimony from a former inmate. Now a whistleblower, the former inmate said that a group of jihadists who call themselves “the Brothers,” or “the Akhi” (Arabic for brother), have gained control of the prison, where many convicted terrorists and terror-related offenders mix freely with ordinary prisoners. “The problem is that Belmarsh is also a holding prison and so young people who are brainwashed and indoctrinated then go out into the wider prison system and create wider Akhi networks.” In the five years to December 31, 2014, the number of Muslim inmates at Belmarsh has more than doubled to 265, or 30% of the total prisoners.

May 17. A Muslim convert who was arrested for a plot to behead a British soldier had his sentence reduced. Brusthom Ziamani, 20, was arrested in east London; he was carrying a 12-inch knife, a hammer and an Islamic flag. At his trial, the court was told that he had researched the location of Army bases in London and had shown his ex-girlfriend weapons, described Lee Rigby’s killer, Michael Adebolajo, as a “legend” and told her he would “kill soldiers.” The judges reviewing his sentence said: “Given his youth, we consider that the custodial part of the sentence, namely 22 years, was too long.” Instead they gave him 19 years.

May 18. Ofsted, the official government agency responsible for inspecting and regulating British schools, admitted that it failed properly to inspect a school run by the Deobandis, a conservative Muslim sect, because the inspector was “prohibited” from talking to pupils or staff. The inspector’s report into child safety at the private Zakaria Muslim Girls’ High School in Batley said that celebrations for the Islamic festival of Eid meant he could only speak to senior managers. After Sky News reported on the issue, Ofsted said it was taking “appropriate action” against the inspector concerned and has re-inspected the school, which teaches 149 girls aged 11 to 16. Deobandis, many of whom are said to shun non-Muslims, are thought to control around half of Britain’s private Islamic schools.

May 18. The Queen’s Speech, setting out the government’s program for the next session of parliament, unveiled a controversial new counter-extremism bill that includes powers to gag individuals and ban organizations deemed as extremist. The bill does not, however, include a definition of extremism. Until now the main focus of British policy has been to prevent violent extremism. Simon Cole, the police lead for the government’s Prevent anti-radicalization program, said that the proposals targeting alleged extremists are not enforceable and risk creating “thought police” in Britain by making police officers judges of “what people can and cannot say.”

May 18. A Muslim man who was arrested after giving police a false name filed a lawsuit against the City of London Police for discrimination. Akmal Afzal, 23, claims he was arrested at the 2012 Olympics because he was an “Asian man with a beard.” Afzal, a Briton of Pakistani descent, was released without charge but is suing for false imprisonment, assault and discrimination. His lawyer said: “His position is he did nothing wrong and he says the reason he was treated in the way he was relates to his ethnic origin and/or his religion.”

May 22. The government was accused of burying a report on prison extremism which warns that staff have been reluctant to tackle Islamist behavior for fear of being labelled “racist,” according to the Sunday Times. The independent review, commissioned by Secretary of State for Justice Michael Gove, says that Islamist inmates have exploited the “sensitivity to racism” among prison staff by making false complaints that they are victims of discrimination. The review recommended the creation of “specially designated units” in high-security prisons to house the most “dangerous, extreme and subversive” Islamists. There are more than 12,000 Muslims in prisons across England and Wales, according to the latest figures.

May 23. British and American intelligence services identified 27-year-old El Shafee Elsheikh as the fourth member of the Islamic State execution cell responsible for beheading 27 hostages. The four guards, led by “Jihadi John,” were nicknamed the “Beatles” because of their English accents. Elsheikh, who was granted asylum in Britain when he was seven, left for Syria in 2012 after being radicalized in just 17 days after attending mosques in London.

May 23. A British Muslim woman who wanted raise her children in the Islamic State in Syria was jailed for two and a half years. Lorna Moore, 34, who failed to tell authorities that her husband, Sajid Aslam, 34, had left for Syria, was planning to take her three young children, one of them 11 months old, to the war zone. During sentencing at the Old Bailey, Judge Charles Wide said Moore, a Muslim convert from Walsall, West Midlands, “knew perfectly well of [her] husband’s dedication to terrorism.”

May 23. A survey conducted by ComRes on behalf of Ahmadiyya Muslim Community UK found that 33% of British adults believe that Islam promotes violence in the UK. The study also found that 56% of Britons disagree with the view that Islam is compatible with British values.

May 24. The BBC reported that a National Health Service (NHS) doctor who spent seven years working in Britain left his wife and two children in Sheffield to join the Islamic State. Issam Abuanza, 37, a Palestinian doctor with British citizenship, is the first practicing NHS doctor known to have joined the Islamic State.

May 25. Police in West Yorkshire revealed that they are currently investigating 220 alleged cases of child sex grooming in Keighley and Bradford. The cases involve 261 suspects and 188 victims. The revelation came after Keighley’s former MP, Ann Cryer, called for the perpetrators of the crimes to be brought to justice. Cryer suffered verbal abuse and was accused of “demonizing” the Asian community when she began a campaign more than a decade ago to get the authorities to tackle child sex grooming in Keighley.

May 25. A Nigerian man launched an appeal against a decision by the Home Office to strip him of his British nationality. The man, known only as L2 for legal reasons, is directly associated with close friends of Michael Adebolajo, who murdered Lee Rigby in London in May 2013, and Mohammed Emwazi, or “Jihadi John.” L2 was deemed such a national security threat that Home Secretary Theresa May personally signed an order removing his British nationality in 2013.

May 26. Home Secretary Theresa May established an independent review into the “misuse” of Sharia law in Britain. The inquiry will examine if Sharia ideas are being “misused or exploited” to discriminate against women. The review will not, however, examine whether Sharia law itself is discriminatory against women. A Home Office statement said: “It will not be a review of the totality of Sharia law, which is a source of guidance for many Muslims in the UK.” According to May, many British people “benefit a great deal” from Sharia teaching.

Baroness Cox, who has spearheaded a parliamentary drive to rein in unofficial Sharia courts in Britain, said:

“My reservation is that it won’t get to the root of the problem. … a lot of Muslim women I know say that the men in their communities just laugh at this proposed investigation, that they will go underground so the investigation will have to be very robust.

“But the aspects which are causing such concerns — such as that a man can divorce his wife by saying ‘I divorce you’ three times — that is inherent; the right to ‘chastise’ women is inherent; polygamy is inherent. I don’t think those things are a distortion of Sharia law. These are aspects of Sharia law which are unacceptable.”

May 27. A British citizen who plotted to carry out a suicide bomb attack at Heathrow Airport was sentenced to 40 years in prison. Minh Quang Pham, 33, was sentenced in New York for travelling to Yemen to train with members of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP). Pham pled guilty to three counts of terrorist-related activity based on his support for the group, but denied he intended to carry out his plot and no attack ever occurred. Pham, a Vietnamese born British convert to Islam, was first arrested in Britain in June 2012 and was extradited to the U.S. in February 2015.

May 29. Music festivals, big sports venues and nightclubs have been placed on “high alert” for potential jihadist attacks, according to a senior anti-terrorism officer interviewed by the Sunday Times. Neil Basu, the deputy assistant commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, said that crowded places — including Glastonbury, billed as the world’s largest music festival, which will draw 135,000 people to Somerset from June 22 to 26 — are a major concern for police this summer. Basu warned: “These people are perfectly happy to target civilians with the maximum terror impact. Crowded places were always a concern for us, but now they are right at the top of the agenda.”

May 31. The trial began of a Muslim man who tried to decapitate a random stranger in the London Underground. Somalia-born Muhiddin Mire, 30, attacked musician Lyle Zimmerman, 56, at Leytonstone Underground station on December 5 with a knife while yelling, “This is for my Syrian brothers; I am going to spill your blood.” The jury was told that after the attack, police found images of Islamic State hostages having their throats cut on Mire’s cellphone. The prosecutor said:

“At the end of the assault, when Mr. Zimmerman was lying motionless and defenseless on the floor of the ticket hall, the defendant crouched over him and quite deliberately began to cut Mr. Zimmerman’s throat with a knife blade. Mercifully, Mr. Zimmerman survived the ordeal because, although he suffered three jagged wounds to the front of his neck, none of them caused any damage to any of the major blood vessels in that area.”

Left: Muhiddin Mire, a Somalia-born Muslim, tried to behead musician Lyle Zimmerman at a London Underground station with a knife while yelling “this is for my Syrian brothers.” Right: Belmarsh maximum-security prison in London has become “like a jihadi training camp,” according to testimony from a former inmate.

Soeren Kern is a Senior Fellow at the New York-based Gatestone Institute. He is also Senior Fellow for European Politics at the Madrid-based Grupo de Estudios Estratégicos / Strategic Studies Group. Follow him on Facebook and on Twitter. His first book, Global Fire, will be out in 2016.

A Month of Islam and Multiculturalism in Germany: October 2016 Child Marriage, No-go Zones, Gang Rapes by Soeren Kern

Residents of Essen complained that police often refuse to respond to calls for help and begged city officials to restore order. One resident said: “I was born here and I do not feel safe anymore.” City officials flatly rejected the complaints. The Sarah Nußbaum Haus, a kindergarten in Kassel, said that “because of the high proportion of Muslim children,” and because of the different cultures of the children, the school was “renouncing” Christian rituals. During the first six months of 2016, more than 2,000 migrants who requested asylum were found to be carrying false passports, but German border control officers allowed them into the country anyway. Migrants with false papers could be linked to the Islamic State, security analysts warned. German President Joachim Gauck said he believed that Germany will eventually have a Muslim president. Muslims are attacking Christians at refugee shelters throughout Germany. “The religious minorities in refugee accommodations are now experiencing the same oppression prevalent in their countries of origin,” according to the NGO Open Doors. The Federal Statistics Office reported that the birthrate in Germany reached the highest level in 33 years in 2015, boosted mainly by babies born to migrant women. A 49-year-old Syrian refugee in Rhineland-Palatinate is seeking social welfare benefits in Germany for his four wives and 23 children. October 1. Two migrants raped a 23-year-old woman in Lüneburg as she was walking in a park with her young child. The men, who remain at large, forced the child to watch while they took turns assaulting the woman. October 2. A 19-year-old migrant raped a 90-year-old woman as she was leaving a church in downtown Düsseldorf. Police initially described the suspect as “a Southern European with North African roots.” It later emerged that the man is a Moroccan with a Spanish passport. October 2. Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble called for the development of a “German Islam” to help integrate Muslims in the country. In an opinion article published by Welt am Sonntag, he wrote: “Considering the diverse origins of Muslims in Germany, we want to promote the development of a German Islam, the development of self-assurance of Muslims living as Muslims in Germany, in a free, open, pluralistic and tolerant order, according to our laws and the religious neutrality of the state. “There is no doubt that the growing number of Muslims in our country today is testing the tolerance of mainstream society. The origin of the vast majority of refugees means that we are increasingly dealing with people from very different cultures…. In this tense situation, we should not allow for the emergence of an atmosphere in which well-integrated people in Germany feel alien.” October 4. Münchner Merkur reported that the 2016 Munich Oktoberfest recorded its lowest turnout since 2001. Visitors reportedly stayed away due to concerns about terrorism and migrant-related sexual assaults. This year’s Munich Oktoberfest recorded its lowest turnout since 2001. Visitors reportedly stayed away due to concerns about terrorism and migrant-related sexual assaults. (Image source: Flickr/Sergey Zhaffsky) October 6. Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reported on a German intelligence study which found that almost half the German Salafists who left for Syria or Iraq were active in mosques. “The mosques continue to play a central role in the radicalization of Islamists in Germany,” a spokeswoman for the German domestic intelligence agency, the Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz (BfV), said. The ongoing study analyzes the background and course of the radicalization of persons who left for Syria or Iraq. The study has collected data from 784 Islamists who left Germany or were actively trying to leave the country. The BfV estimates that there are 9,200 known Salafists in Germany. October 6. More than 400 residents of the Altenessen district in Essen met local politicians in a televised “town hall meeting” to discuss spiraling violence and crime perpetrated by migrants in the area. Residents complained that police often refuse to respond to calls for help and begged city officials to restore order. One resident said: “I was born here and I do not feel safe anymore.” City officials flatly rejected the complaints. Mayor Thomas Kufen said: “Altenessen is not a no-go area, the people here are just angry.” Police Chief Frank Richter added: “I am sick and tired of hearing about no-go zones in Essen.” He insisted that Essen und Altenessen are perfectly safe. October 7. The Sarah Nußbaum Haus, a kindergarten in Kassel, announced that it would not be celebrating Christmas this year, “because of the high proportion of Muslim children.” According to local media, there will be “no Christmas tree, no Christmas stories and no Christmas spirit.” Non-Muslim parents said that celebrating Christmas is a normal “part of the integration process to get to know the new culture.” School officials responded by saying that because of the different cultures of the children, the school was “renouncing” Christian rituals. They also said that teachers at the school are now required to ensure that the children do not exchange their sandwiches, to prevent Muslim children from eating pork. October 8. Welt am Sonntag reported that during the first six months of 2016, more than 2,000 migrants who requested asylum were found to be carrying false passports, but German border control officers allowed them into the country anyway. Migrants with false papers could be linked to the Islamic State, security analysts warned. October 10. Jaber al-Bakr, a 22-year-old refugee from Syria, was arrested after police found explosives in his apartment in Chemnitz. He was suspected of plotting to bomb an airport in Berlin. Two days later, he hanged himself in a jail in Leipzig. October 14. German President Joachim Gauck, who is stepping down for health reasons, said he believed that Germany will eventually have a Muslim president. Of the eleven German presidents so far, nine have been Protestant and two have been Catholic. Gauck’s statement caused a stir in Germany. Some said that all German citizens are eligible for the position, regardless of confession, and others said a Muslim president would further divide society. Vice President of the European Parliament Alexander Graf Lambsdorff said: “A mullah with a turban would be impossible, but a representative of modern, enlightened Islam, such as the mayor in London, of course.” The Office of the President told Bild that the oath of office would never be changed from “so help me God” to “so help me Allah.” October 14. Green Party politician Volker Beck called on Germans to learn Arabic so that they can communicate with migrants who do not speak German. When asked on NTV how migrants can integrate if there are no German speakers in many parts of German cities, he replied: “Other countries are more relaxed about the fact that, in some areas, a different language is spoken by a migrant community. In the US, you will find your Chinatown, you will find areas where Mexicans live, or whatever community is strong in a city.” He also said it was good that German is not spoken in many German mosques. “Arab sermons are a piece of home,” he said. October 14. Volker Kauder, a key member of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s party, threatened internet giants such as Facebook and Google with fines up to 50,000 euros ($53,000) if they fail to tackle online hate speech. The move comes amid a rise in anti-immigration sentiment in Germany. October 15. A Syrian migrant disrupted a wedding at the Karmel Church in downtown Duisburg. He burst into the building and began fondling a statue of the Virgin Mary while shouting “Allahu Akhbar” (“Allah is the greatest.”) After undergoing a psychological evaluation, the man was released. The incident is one of a growing number in which Muslim migrants have disrupted or vandalized German churches. October 16. A 16-year-old boy and his 15-year-old girlfriend were walking along the banks of the Alster, a lake in the heart of Hamburg, when a stranger ambushed him from behind and plunged a knife into his back. The attacker then pushed the girl into the water and walked away. The girl survived, but the boy died of his wounds. The suspect, a “southern-looking” (südländischer Erscheinung) man in his early twenties, remains at large. Police say the victims were not robbed and there is no evident motive for the crime: The suspect appears to have randomly stabbed the boy just because he felt like it. The Islamic State later claimed responsibility for the murder, but German police cast doubt on that claim. October 17. The German Press Council reprimanded the weekly newspaper, Junge Freiheit, for revealing the nationality of three Afghan teenagers who raped a woman at a train station in Vienna, Austria, in April 2016. The press council said the nationality of the perpetrators was “not relevant” to the case, and by revealing this information the newspaper “deliberately and pejoratively represented the suspects as second-class persons.” In the interests of “fair reporting,” the council demanded that the newspaper remove the offending item from its website. The newspaper refused to comply, and said it would continue to publish the nationalities of criminal suspects. October 17. The German branch of Open Doors, a non-governmental organization supporting persecuted Christians, reported that Muslims are attacking Christians at refugee shelters throughout Germany. The NGO documented 743 incidents between May and September 2016, but said they were only the “tip of the iceberg.” The report said: “Many of the refugees concerned have previously been persecuted and discriminated against in their Islamic countries of origin and have therefore fled to Germany. The religious minorities in refugee accommodations are now experiencing the same oppression prevalent in their countries of origin.” October 17. The Federal Statistics Office reported that the birthrate in Germany reached the highest level in 33 years in 2015, boosted mainly by babies born to migrant women. The rate was 1.5 births per woman in 2015, up from 1.47 births in 2014, and the highest figure since 1982 when it was 1.51. For German women, the birth rate increased only slightly from 1.42 children per woman in 2014 to 1.43 in 2015. For women of foreign nationality, the rate increased from 1.86 to 1.95 children per woman. October 18. Sigrid Meierhofer, the mayor of Garmisch-Partenkirchen, in an urgent letter (Brandbrief) to the Bavarian government, threatened to close a shelter that houses 250 mostly male migrants from Africa if public safety and order could not be restored. The letter, which was leaked to the Münchner Merkur, stated that local police had responded to more emergency calls during the past six weeks than in all of the previous 12 months combined. October 18. Süddeutsche Zeitung reported that during the first eight months of 2016, more than 17,000 migrants sued the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) for not giving them full refugee status. Most Syrian refugees in Germany receive only partial asylum status, known as subsidiary protection, which delays family repatriations by at least two years. According to Süddeutsche, 90% of the refugees who challenged the subsidiary protection status in court won their case and were granted full rights under the Geneva Convention. Refugees with full status are allowed immediately to submit applications to bring spouses and children to Germany. If all of the 17,000 migrants win their cases, hundreds of thousands of additional migrants would be allowed to come to Germany. October 19. Bild reported that a 49-year-old Syrian refugee in Rhineland-Palatinate is seeking social welfare benefits in Germany for his four wives and 23 children. The man, identified as Ghazia A., told Bild that “according to our religion, I have the duty to visit and be with each family equally, and not show any preferential treatment.” Local officials told the newspaper that the family is integrating well and all of the children are going to school. October 19. A 29-year-old migrant from Syria appeared in court on charges of sexually molesting ten children in Freiburg and Müllheim. The father of one of the victims took a photograph of the suspect, but police waited ten days before acting on the lead. October 19. A 16-year-old German-Moroccan girl appeared in court on terrorism charges. In February 2016, when she was 15, she stabbed a police officer with a kitchen knife at the central train station in Hanover. Prosecutors say she was conducting a “martyrdom operation” for the Islamic State. October 20. Pupils at a grade school in Garmisch-Partenkirchen were required to memorize and recite the shahada, the Muslim profession of faith (“There is no god but Allah, and Mohammed is his messenger.”), in both German and Arabic, for an interfaith chapel service. October 21. In an interview with Welt am Sonntag, Islam expert and Green Party member Kurt Edler said that Syrian migrants should be allowed to set up their own city in Germany as a way to prevent radicalization. He said: “Why do not we set up a New Aleppo in Pomerania? Then we can show that what the British and Irish emigrants have done in the North East of the USA is also possible with us.” October 24. A group of Serbian teenagers in Hamburg were handed suspended sentences for gang-raping a 14-year-old girl and leaving her for dead in sub-zero temperatures. The judge said that although “the penalties may seem mild to the public,” the teens had all made confessions, appeared remorseful and longer posed a danger to society. The ruling, which effectively allowed the rapists to walk free, provoked a rare moment of public outrage over the problem of migrant sex crimes in Germany. October 24. A YouGov poll found that 68% of Germans believe that security in Germany has deteriorated over the past several years. Also, 68% of respondents said they fear for their lives and property in German train stations and subways, while 63% feel unsafe at large public events. October 25. Seven migrant boys, some as young as seven years old, sexually assaulted three girls (ages 9, 11 and 14) at a public swimming pool in Berlin. October 25. The German edition of the Huffington Post published an article by a Syrian migrant named Aras Bacho in which he demanded that all signs and products in Germany be translated into in Arabic to make life easier for migrants. He wrote: “As a refugee I believe that in Europe the street signs should be translated into Arabic. Likewise, food packaging should be in Arabic. It should also be possible to take exams in Arabic…. Most refugees have been driving in Syria. It would be helpful if the road signs were in Arabic. We should help these people more, no matter what it costs.” October 25. Police in five German states raided a dozen apartments and a refugee shelter as part of a counter-terrorism investigation. Fourteen Chechens, all asylum seekers who arrived in Germany in 2013, are at the center of a probe into “terrorist financing.” No one was arrested. October 25. A group of Muslim children shouting “Allahu Akbar” threw stones at a visiting Ethiopian priest who was walking to a chapel in Raunheim. Police said the priest was targeted because he was wearing a cross. October 27. A ten-year-old girl was raped while she was riding her bicycle to school in Leipzig. Police published a facial composite of the migrant suspect with the politically correct warning: “This image is to be published only in print media products in the Leipzig region. Publishing it on the internet, including on social media such as Facebook, is not covered by the court order and is therefore not allowed.” October 27. Officials in Monheim donated 845,000 euros ($890,000) of taxpayer money to two Islamic associations, to build mosques in the town. The money will be used to purchase land for the mosques, the construction of which will be paid for by the Turkish government. Mayor Daniel Zimmermann said he hopes the mosques will promote Muslim integration. “I hope the mosques will be city-shaping and also architectural monuments,” he said. The grant is subject to only one condition: the minarets must not be more than 25 meters (80 feet) high. October 27. Deutsche Welle reported that the parents of a German teenager face prosecution for refusing to allow their son to enter a mosque during a school field trip. The parents were fined 300 euros ($315) for their son’s truancy. The prosecutor’s office in Itzehoe is now reviewing whether or not the parents should appear in court because they did not pay the fine. The school’s principal, Renate Fritzsche, said that there are no exceptions to Germany’s mandatory school law. The goal of education, Fritzsche emphasized, is to teach children about other cultures so they will be able to interact and tolerate them. October 27. Berliner Zeitung reported that a 19-year-old Syrian migrant, identified only as Shaas Al-M., scouted out potential terror targets in Berlin for the Islamic State. He was allegedly actively recruiting assassins in Germany and was preparing to attack when he was arrested in March 2016. The man, who received religious and military training with the Islamic State in Syria, arrived in Germany in the summer of 2015 posing as a Syrian refugee. October 28. Reuters reported that many Arab mosques in Germany are more conservative than those in Syria. The report states: “A dozen Syrians in six places of worship in three cities told Reuters they were uncomfortable with very conservative messages in Arabic-speaking mosques. People have criticized the way the newcomers dress and practice their religion, they said. Some insisted the Koran be interpreted word-for-word.” October 28. A mob of 17 Muslim migrants sexually assaulted two women in front of a church in Freiburg. Police arrested three of the men, all from Gambia, who arrived in Germany as refugees in 2015 and had previously been detained for other crimes. October 28. Der Spiegel reported that Justice Minister Heiko Maas wants to make it easier for German courts to void child marriages. There currently are 1,475 married adolescents in Germany; 361 of them are younger than 14 years, 120 are 14 or 15 years old. According to German law, young people above the age of 16 may marry, but only if the other spouse is 18 and a family court gives a so-called exemption. Maas wants to tighten the criteria for this. The exemption is to be granted only “if the intended marriage does not affect the welfare of the applicant.” Günter Krings (CDU), parliamentary secretary of state, said the measure does not go far enough. “For the sake of clarity of our legal system, we should consistently ensure that no marriages with minors can be concluded in our country, even in exceptional cases,” he said. October 31. A 53-year-old woman attacked two police officers after they entered her apartment in Mülheim. The officers were checking in on her after she had allegedly thrown furniture out the window. When she refused to open the door, the officers broke it down. Once inside the apartment, the veiled woman attacked them with a box-cutter while shouting “Allahu Akbar” (“Allah is the greatest.”) Police said the woman was a Muslim convert and was already familiar to police after a series of earlier incidents linked with Islamic extremism.

A Month of Islam and Multiculturalism in Germany: March 2017 by Soeren Kern

  • Police knew as early as March 2016 that Anis Amri, the 31-year-old Tunisian who carried out the December 19 jihadist attack on the Christmas market in Berlin, was planning an attack, but he was not deported because he did not have a passport.

  • Humboldt University will become the sixth university in Germany to teach Islamic theology. Berlin Mayor Michael Müller revealed that the institute is being paid for by German taxpayers. Humboldt University President Sabine Kunst rejected calls for a joint “Faculty for Theology” for Christians, Muslims and Jews.
  • “What is clear is that the financing of mosques by foreign actors must stop.” — Jens Spahn, a member of the executive committee of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU).

March 1. More than 4,000 millionaires emigrated from Germany in 2016, compared to 1,000 millionaires who left the country in 2015, according to the 2017 Global Wealth Migration Review. Before the migration crisis erupted in 2015, millionaires were leaving Germany at the rate of only a few hundred per year. Most of Germany’s millionaires, citing deteriorating security, left for Australia, Canada, the United States, Dubai and Israel. The mass exodus of wealth is hollowing out Germany’s tax base at a time when the German government is spending tens of billions of euros for the upkeep of millions of refugees and migrants from the Muslim world. The report’s editor, Andrew Amoils, warned that the wealthy are a kind of early warning system for society. Due to their financial status, education and international contacts, they can emigrate more easily than others. Over the longer term, however, their exodus portends increased emigration from among the middle class, according to the report.

March 2. A 36-year-old Syrian migrant identified only as Abdalfatah H. A. was arrested in Düsseldorf on charges of murdering 36 people in March 2013 in Syria in the name of the Al-Nusra jihadist group. He arrived in Germany with his pregnant wife and three children, aged three, five and seven, in October 2015. He had been collecting €2,400 ($2,600) a month in social welfare benefits since April 2016.

March 2. Administrators of the Johannes Rau Gymnasium, a secondary school in Wuppertal, asked teachers to prohibit Muslim pupils from engaging in “provocative praying” in public. An internal memo stated: “In recent weeks, it has been increasingly observed that Muslim pupils in the school building are praying, clearly visible to others, signaled by ritual washings in the toilets, the rolling out of prayer mats, and taking up certain postures. This is not permitted.”

March 3. An 18-year-old asylum seeker from Somalia was charged with murdering an 87-year-old woman at a retirement home in Neuenhaus. Police said the accused entered the facility through an unlocked back door with the aim of having sexual intercourse with elderly residents. He sexually assaulted a 59-year-old paralytic, entered an adjacent room and sexually assaulted an 87-year-old man. He then beat the man’s wife, who was sleeping in the same room. The woman died from her injuries. The accused is being housed in a psychiatric hospital.

March 4. Spiegel Online reported that more than 900 people, including many women, have left Germany to join the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. Roughly one-third have returned to Germany, while another 145 are believed to have been killed in battle. A state prosecutor warned that the returnees are especially dangerous: “They often have had extreme experiences of violence, are strongly radicalized and have few prospects in Germany.”

March 7. The German-language version of the ISIS magazine Rumiyah called on lone wolf jihadists to kill “apostate” imams in Germany and Austria. An article entitled, “Kill the Infidel Imams in Germany and Austria,” specifically mentioned the following “apostate” imams: Aiman Mazyek, Secretary-General of the Central Council of Muslims in Germany; Abdul Adhim Kamouss, an imam in Berlin of Moroccan origin; Hesham Shashaa, an imam at the Darul Quran mosque in Munich; and Omar Al-Rawi, a Vienna city councilman.

March 9. A 37-year-old migrant from Kosovo, identified only as Fatmir H., was arrested after he injured nine people, including two police officers, with an axe at the central train station in Düsseldorf. Police said Fatmir H. suffers from paranoid schizophrenia and was in an “exceptional mental state” at the time of the attack.

March 10. An unidentified man brandishing a machete attacked an 80-year-old man in the Kalkum district of Düsseldorf. The perpetrator remains at large. In Hamburg, six people were injured when two youths with tear gas attacked a train carrying 50 people. The perpetrators remain at large.

March 10. Germany spent more than €23 billion ($25 billion) on the reception, accommodation and care of migrants and refugees in 2016, according to Bundestag Vice President Johannes Singhammer. The average annual cost per migrant was approximately €11,800 ($13,000). In Berlin alone, the actual amount of money spent on migrants was twice as much as initially budgeted: €1.27 billion rather than €685 million.

March 10. The Bundesrat, the upper chamber of the German parliament, rejected a law that would have fast-tracked deportations to Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia by classifying those states as “safe countries of origin.” The German Constitution defines safe countries as countries “in which, on the basis of their laws, enforcement practices and general political conditions, it can be safely concluded that neither political persecution nor inhuman or degrading punishment or treatment exists.” The decision, led by federal states with left-leaning governing coalitions, means that criminal migrants from the Maghreb will indefinitely remain in Germany.

March 11. Police in Essen foiled a jihadist attack on a shopping center at the Limbecker Platz. Essen Police Chief Frank Richter said he had received “very concrete indications” on the plot to attack the facility, which has more than 200 stores and an average of 60,000 visitors on any given Saturday. Police arrested two Salafists from Oberhausen, including one who had fought for the Islamic State in Syria.

March 12. The number of crimes committed by asylum seekers and refugees in Baden-Württemberg increased significantly in 2016. Statistics showed a total of 251,000 criminal suspects, of whom 107,417 were non-Germans, mostly from Turkey, Romania and Italy. Of the non-German criminals, 25,379 were asylum seekers and refugees (up from 18,695 in 2015). They committed 64,329 crimes in 2016, an increase of nearly 20% over 2015. Syrians were the most frequent offenders 4,053 (2015: 1,253), followed by Gambians 2,346 (2015: 1,592) and Afghans 1,934 (2015: 638). The number of suspects from Kosovo fell from 1,531 to 1,094 and Serbs from 1,488 to 1,224. Criminals from those two countries were increasingly being deported in 2016. Police noted a 95.5% increase in the number of physical assaults involving at least one migrant, to 7,670 cases in 2016.

March 13. The number of crimes committed by asylum seekers and refugees in Bavaria increased significantly in 2016. Statistics showed a total of 274,633 criminal suspects of whom 180,023 were Germans (+0.3%) and 94,610 were non-Germans (+14.9%). Of the non-German criminals, 26,332 were asylum seekers and refugees, an increase of 57.8% compared to the previous year. The proportion of migrant suspects to all suspects was 9.6%, an increase of 3.2% (in 2012 the share was 1.8%). Among the migrant suspects, Syrians were the most frequent offenders at 16.1% (2015: 11.1%), followed by Afghans with 14.3% (2015: 10.1%), Iraqis with 8.8% (2015: 4.6%) and Nigerians with 6.8% (2015: 5.4%). “The increase in crime in Bavaria in 2016 is mainly due to foreign suspects, especially immigrants,” said Bavarian Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann.

March 14. A migrant from Kosovo who has lived in Germany for 28 years and is an active member of the hardline Islamic Salafist movement demanded that the Meierfeld secondary school in Herford provide his ninth-grade son with a prayer room “so that he can perform the Friday prayer on time and without disturbance.” The man also prohibited his son from attending music lessons, which he said are banned by Islam. Previously, the man demanded that the Friedenstal secondary school, also in Herford, provide a prayer room for another of his sons.

March 14. More than 400 police and counter-terrorism officers raided a mosque in Hildesheim. The Interior Minister of Lower Saxony, Boris Pistorius, said the Deutschsprachigen Islamkreis Hildesheim (DIK) was a “hotspot of the radical Salafist scene” and ordered it closed because it was “indoctrinating Muslims to go to Iraq and Syria.”

March 14. A 17-year-old Somali migrant raped a 43-year-old woman at a train station in Bamberg. A “southerner” (südländischer Typ) raped a 14-year-old girl at a playground in Döbeln.

March 15. A 40-year-old German man of Turkish descent stabbed to death his 34-year-old wife in front of a child daycare center in Kiel. Neighbors said the couple, who were separated, had quarreled about moving their children to Turkey.

March 16. Prosecutors in Gelsenkirchen charged a 23-year-old German man of Turkish origin, identified only as Anil O., with membership in a terrorist organization for joining the Islamic State in Syria. He traveled to Syria in August 2015 to work as a medic but, according to prosecutors, he became disillusioned with the Islamic State. Upon his return to Germany, he was arrested.

March 17. A ten-year-old asylum seeker from Afghanistan sexually assaulted a 75-year-old woman in Tyrol (Austria). Police said they believe he has committed at least five other offenses of the same kind.

March 17. German immigration authorities are testing software that will be able to recognize the dialect of migrants to determine whether they are legitimate asylum seekers. Some 60% of migrants who have arrived in Germany since 2015 do not have identification documents. “The idea is to record speech samples from asylum seekers and carry out an automatic dialect analysis,” said Julian Detzel of the Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF).

March 18. Five Arab migrants were accused of gang raping a seven-year-old girl at a refugee reception shelter in the Bahrenfeld district of Hamburg.

March 19. Two Syrian asylum seekers, aged 17 and 23, stabbed two female passersby in broad daylight in the pedestrian zone of Dessau-Roßlau.

March 21. Two North African asylum seekers were charged with attempted manslaughter after they pushed a 40-year-old man onto the tracks of an oncoming train at the station in Dresden-Zschachwitz. The conductor brought the train to a halt a few meters from the man, who was prevented from getting back onto the platform by the perpetrators, a 23-year-old Moroccan and a 27-year-old Libyan. Chief Prosecutor Lorenz Haase initially dropped charges against the men, concluding that there was “no evidence” of murderous intent. Haase reversed his decision on day later after a nationwide outpouring of anger.

March 21. Three Muslim teenagers were handed sentences of between six and seven years in prison for the April 16, 2016 bombing of a Sikh temple in Essen. The judge ruled that the motive for the attack, in which three people were injured, was hatred of other religions. The three were members of the hardline Islamic Salafist movement.

March 22. The German Press Council (Presserat) loosened its guidelines (Pressekodex) for reporting crimes. Journalists are now allowed to provide information about the ethnic or religious background of suspects or perpetrators of crimes if there is a “justified public interest” to do so. Previously, journalists were only allowed to provide such details if it was absolutely necessary (begründeter Sachbezug) to understand the reported event. The change followed complaints from German media outlets that the old guidelines were difficult to interpret.

March 23. The Mannheim Labor Court rejected a lawsuit filed by a 40-year-old Muslim nurse who claimed that she was unfairly terminated after only one week by a nursing home because she refused to wash male patients. The woman, who has been living in Germany for three years, told the court that she wants to integrate into German society but does not understand why her former employer could not accept that her religion forbids her to wash men. The court ruled that the employer was entitled to dismiss employees during the six-month period of probation.

March 23. The Interior Minister of Hesse ordered a “permanent ban” the Al-Madina Mosque in Kassel for promoting Salafi-jihadism and for “exchanging and inviting hatred and violence against other religious groups, states and peoples, as well as generally differently thinking people.”

March 23. The number of prisoners in the state of Baden-Württemberg has increased by 615 to 7,400 since 2015, and all 17 of the state’s prisons are overcrowded. The reason for the increase in the number of inmates is the influx of migrants: The proportion of foreigners among the prison population increased from 39% to 46% in the last two years alone, according to the Stuttgarter Nachrichten.

March 24. The Berlin Police Department announced the creation of a special task force to investigate acid attacks. At least six women in the city have been attacked with acid since the beginning of 2017. The latest attack occurred on March 14, when a 41-year-old pedestrian was attacked by an unknown cyclist in Prenzlauer Berg district of the capital.

March 24. A 31-year-old Afghan migrant brandishing a hammer attacked a 59-year-old man riding a bicycle in the Bergedorf district of Hamburg. Police said the attacker, who was found soaked in his victim’s blood, was “psychologically ill.”

March 24. A 30-year-old man shouting “Allahu Akhbar” and “you are all going to die” forced the temporary closure of the central bus station in Bamberg. Police said the man showed “clear signs of mental illness.” They added that an arrest warrant was not issued due to his illness.

March 24. A 36-year-old Tunisian jihadist evaded deportation by requesting asylum in Germany. Haykel S., who was arrested during a counter-terrorism raid in Frankfurt on February 1, was already on the commercial airplane that was to fly him to Tunis when the Frankfurt administrative court ordered that he be allowed to remain in Germany. Haykel S. first arrived in Germany in 2003 on a student visa. Due to his subsequent marriage to a German, he was granted residency. He later returned to Tunisia and then returned to Germany in August 2015. Since then, he has repeatedly been arrested for criminal activity.

March 25. A North Rhine-Westphalia police report leaked to Bild am Sonntag revealed that police knew as early as March 2016 that Anis Amri, the 31-year-old Tunisian who carried out the December 19 jihadist attack on the Christmas market in Berlin, was planning an attack, but he was not deported because he did not have a passport. The report stated: “Amri presents a threat in the form of a suicide attack. The commission of a terrorist attack by Amri is expected.”

March 27. The Süddeutsche Zeitung reported that Turkey’s National Intelligence Agency had provided Germany’s BND intelligence service with a list of names of hundreds of alleged followers of the Islamic Gülen movement in Germany. The movement is led by Turkish preacher Fethullah Gülen, who has lived in the United States since 1999. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has blamed Gülen for the failed military coup in July 2016. The list, which includes addresses, telephone numbers and photographs of those concerned, proved that the Turkish government has been secretly spying on persons, associations, schools and other institutions linked to Gülen in Germany.

March 28. Humboldt University of Berlin announced it will open an Islamic theology institute. The objective of the program is “to impart academic foundations in Islamic theology for training imams and to qualify students for a school teaching post.” Humboldt University will become the sixth university in Germany to teach Islamic theology. Berlin Mayor Michael Müller revealed that the institute is being paid for by German taxpayers: €13.5 million ($14.5 million) of government funding will secure the institute’s finances through 2022. Humboldt University President Sabine Kunst rejected calls for a joint “Faculty for Theology” for Christians, Muslims and Jews: “The first step is to set up the Institute for Islamic Theology at the HU. We want this to be a success. It is important that this key project is not overloaded by a much broader idea.”

Humboldt University of Berlin has announced that it will open an Islamic theology institute. It will be the sixth university in Germany to teach Islamic theology. (Image source: Friedrich Petersdorff/Wikimedia Commons)

March 30. Jens Spahn, a member of the executive committee of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU), called for an Islam Law to regulate the practice of Islam in Germany. He demanded German language tests for imams, saying that many of the preachers who delivered sermons in German mosques come from abroad, cannot speak German and are paid by other countries. Spahn also said that mosques should be registered, saying that authorities “did not know how many mosques there are in Germany, where they are or who finances them.” In addition, Spahn, called for the training of imams, teachers of religion and counselors to be paid for with tax money. “What is clear,” he said, “is that the financing of mosques by foreign actors must stop.”

A Month of Islam and Multiculturalism in Germany: July 2016 “Islamist terrorism has arrived in Germany.” by Soeren Kern

  • Figures released in July by Destatis, the government’s statistics agency, showed that more than 2.1 million people migrated to Germany in 2015.

  • More than 33,000 migrants who are supposed to be deported are still in Germany and are being cared for by German taxpayers. Many of the migrants destroyed their passports and are believed to have lied about their countries of origin to make it impossible for them to be deported. Others have gone into hiding so that immigration police cannot find them.
  • An investigative report by Bavarian Radio BR24 found that deradicalization programs in Germany are failing, because many Salafists do not want to become deradicalized.
  • “My impression is that we all underestimated a year ago what was in store for us with this big refugee and migration movement. Integration is a Herculean task that does not end with a three-week language course.” — Jens Spahn, CSU politician.

July 1. A court in Bavaria ruled that a law that prohibits Muslim legal trainees from wearing headscarves is illegal. The district court in Augsburg ruled in favor of Aqilah Sandhu, a 25-year-old law student who filed a lawsuit against the state for barring her from wearing the headscarf at public appearances in court while performing legal training. The ruling said there was no legal basis for the restriction and “no formal law that obligates legal interns to a neutral worldview or a religious neutrality.” Bavarian Justice Minister Winfried Bausback, arguing that legal officials as well as trainees in the court needed to present the appearance of impartiality, said he would appeal the ruling.

July 3. A 24-year-old woman, raped by three migrants in Mannheim in January, admitted to lying about the identity of her attackers. Selin Gören, a Turkish-German woman, initially said that her attackers were German nationals, when in fact they were Muslim migrants. In an interview with Der Spiegel, Gören, the spokeswoman of Germany’s left-wing youth movement, Solid, said she lied because she was afraid of fueling racism against migrants.

July 4. The newspaper, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, reported that the 30 biggest German companies listed on the DAX blue-chip stock market index have employed only 54 refugees, including 50 who were hired as couriers by the logistics provider, Deutsche Post. The report casts doubt on Chancellor Angela Merkel’s promise to integrate the 1.1 million migrants who arrived in Germany in 2015 into the German labor market as quickly as possible. Company executives say the main problem is that migrants lack professional qualifications and German language skills.

July 4. A court in Frankfurt sentenced a 35-year-old German-Turkish Salafist to two-and-a half-years in prison for weapons possession, but absolved him of charges relating to terrorism. Halil D. was originally accused of plotting to attack a bicycle race in Frankfurt. At the time of his arrest, police found an arsenal of weapons, including a pipe bomb, in his basement. Halil D. claimed he built the bomb to spring open the contents of a cigarette vending machine. Police also found Islamic State propaganda videos, as well as copies of Dabiq, the Islamic State’s online magazine, on his computer. At the time of his arrest, Halil D. said: “I believe in the Sharia. German laws do not apply to me.” The court said there was insufficient proof that Halil D. was a terrorist.

Halil D. was accused of plotting to attack a bicycle race in Frankfurt. At the time of his arrest, German police found an arsenal of weapons, including a pipe bomb, in his basement, as well as Islamic State propaganda materials on his computer. The court said there was insufficient proof that Halil D. was a terrorist.

July 7. The Bundestag, the lower house of parliament, unanimously approved changes to the criminal code to expand the definition of rape and make it easier to deport migrants who commit sex crimes. Under the bill, also known as the “No Means No” (“Nein heißt Nein“) law, any form of non-consensual sex will now be punishable as a crime. Previously, the only cases punishable under German law were those in which the victims could show that they physically resisted their attackers. As Germany’s politically correct justice system, is notoriously lenient when it comes to prosecuting, sentencing and deporting foreign offenders, however, the reforms are unlikely to end Germany’s migrant rape epidemic.

July 7. More than six months after mobs of Muslim men sexually assaulted more than 1,000 women in Cologne and other German cities on New Year’s Eve, a German court issued the first two convictions: The District Court of Cologne gave a 20-year-old Iraqi, identified only as Hussain A., and a 26-year-old Algerian, Hassan T., a one-year suspended sentence and then released both men. Hussain, who was 20 at the time, was sentenced under juvenile law and was ordered to attend an integration course and do 80 hours of community service. The newspaper, Bild, published photographs of a jubilant Hassan smiling as he left the courtroom. An observer said the light sentence was a mockery of justice and would serve as an invitation for criminal migrants to do as they please with German women.

July 8. Teachers at the Kurt Tucholsky secondary school in Hamburg boycotted this year’s graduation ceremony to protest a Muslim student who refused to shake hands with a female staff member. The school’s director Andrea Lüdtke, sided with the student: “I accept his decision,” she said. A German columnist, Heike Klovert, defended Lüdtke by arguing that teachers should not be tasked with integrating students:

“She took her Muslim student seriously. She did not try to bend him to adapt to a supposedly German way of doing things. She understands that respect is not dependent upon a handshake, and that not everyone who does not want to shake hands is a misogynist extremist.”

July 10. A Federal Criminal Police Agency (BKA) inquiry into the sex attacks in Cologne, Hamburg, Stuttgart, Düsseldorf and other German cities on New Year’s Eve found that more than 1,200 women were victims of attacks, which were perpetrated by more than 2,000 men, many of whom are believed to be from North Africa. BKA President Holger Münch admitted: “There is a relationship between the attacks and the strong wave of migration in 2015.”

July 10. More than a hundred Shia Muslims took to the streets of Bonn to commemorate the death of Ali, the cousin and son-in-law of Mohammed. Ali was assassinated in 661. Evoking scenes from seventh century Iraq, 130 shirtless men, hypnotically beating their chests and chanting to beating drums, wound their way through downtown Bonn for more than five hours (pictures here). Local health officials reminded doctors they had a legal responsibility to treat anyone with self-inflicted injuries.

July 11. In a new survey, the Pew Research Center found that 61% of Germans believe the recent influx of refugees will “increase the likelihood of terrorism in our country.” The survey also found that 61% of Germans believe Muslims in their country “want to be distinct from the larger society.”

July 13. The Platanus-Schule, a private bilingual school in Berlin, apologized to a Muslim imam after a teacher at the school called him “misogynistic” and “ill-adapted to German life” because he refused to shake her hand. The imam’s lawyer said the apology was insufficient; critics accused the school of “capitulating” and endangering the principle of gender equality in Germany. CDU politician Philipp Lengsfeld wrote on Twitter: “The essence of the handshake debate is not about religion or an individual’s opinion, it is about the authority of the state and gender equality.”

July 14. Figures released by Destatis, the government’s statistics agency, showed that more than 2.1 million people migrated to Germany in 2015. More than 633,000 arrived from Asia, including 309,000 from Syria, 84,000 from Afghanistan and 65,000 from Iraq. More than 113,000 migrants arrived from Africa.

July 14. During a parliamentary investigation into the migrant sex attacks in Cologne on New Year’s Eve, it was revealed that one of the women who was raped became pregnant. She failed to report the attack to police because she felt ashamed.

July 14. Ruprecht Polenz, a former secretary general of the ruling Christian Democratic Union (CDU), said that the German law which regulates name changes (Namensrecht) should be amended to make it easier for Muslim migrants in Germany who feel discriminated against to change their legal names to Christian-sounding ones. German law generally does not allow foreigners to change their names to German ones, and German courts rarely approve such petitions. By custom and practice, German names are only for Germans.

July 15. At least 24 women were sexually assaulted at a music festival in Bremen. The attacks were similar to the “taharrush gamea” [collective harassment] attacks in Cologne on New Year’s Eve. Police have been able to identify only five perpetrators, all of whom are migrants from Afghanistan. Harald Lührs, the lead investigator for sex crimes in Bremen said: “We have never experienced such massive attacks in Bremen. That groups of men surround women in order to grope them, this has never happened here in this magnitude. This is a new problem that the police have to deal with.”

July 16. A document leaked to the newsmagazine, Der Spiegel, revealed that more than 33,000 migrants who are supposed to be deported are still in Germany and are being cared for by German taxpayers. Many of the migrants destroyed their passports and are believed to have lied about their countries of origin to make it impossible for them to be deported. Others have gone into hiding so that immigration police cannot find them.

July 17. An investigative report by Bavarian Radio BR24 found that deradicalization programs in Germany are failing because many Salafists do not want to become deradicalized. The report also showed that many jihadists who have returned to Germany from Iraq and Syria are producing propaganda videos for the Islamic State.

July 18. An Afghan asylum seeker wielding an axe was shot dead by police after he injured five people on a train in Würzburg. The man shouted “Allahu Akbar” [“Allah is the Greatest”] during the attack. Green Party MP Renate Künast criticized the police for using lethal force. In a tweet, she wrote: “Why could the attacker not have been incapacitated without killing him???? Questions!” Künast’s comments provoked a furious backlash, with many accusing her of showing more sympathy for the perpetrator than for the victims. The outpouring of anger against Künast indicates that Germans have had enough of their politically correct politicians.

July 18. Lutz Bachmann, the leader of the anti-migration Pegida movement, announced the formation of a political party, Popular Party for Freedom and Direct Democracy (Freiheitlich Direktdemokratische Volkspartei, FDDV). The move is in response to government threats to ban the Pegida movement.

July 19. Three teenage jihadists who bombed a Sikh temple in Essen on April 16 were formally charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault and “bringing about an explosion.” The teenagers, who said they were upset about the way Muslims are being treated by Sikhs in Northern India, were not charged with terrorism offenses.

July 19. The managers of a German Red Cross refugee shelter in Potsdam were accused of covering up the sexual abuse of women at the facility.

July 20. The Federal Labor Office (Bundesagentur für Arbeit, BA) reported that the educational level of newly arrived migrants in Germany is far lower than expected: only a quarter have a high school diploma, while three quarters have no vocational training at all. Only 4% of new arrivals to Germany are highly qualified.

July 22. Ali Sonboly, an 18-year-old Iranian-German who harbored hatred for Arabs and Turks, killed ten people (including himself) and wounded 35 others at a McDonald’s in Munich.

July 23. A mob of men shouting “Allahu Akbar” barged into a nudist beach in Xanten and “insulted and threatened” the beachgoers. Police kept the incident hidden, apparently to avoid negative media coverage of Muslims “in these sensitive times.”

July 24. Mohammed Daleel, a 27-year-old migrant from Syria whose asylum application was rejected, injured 15 people when he blew himself up at a concert in Ansbach. The suicide bombing was the first in Germany attributed to the Islamic State. Daleel had fought with the Islamic State and al-Qaeda in Iraq before coming to Germany. In a cellphone video made before the attack, Daleel vowed that Germans “will not be able to sleep peacefully anymore.” Although German authorities had tried to deport Daleel in early 2016, the effort was blocked by German Left Party MP Harald Weinberg, who demanded that Daleel get medical care for a knee injury. “After everything I knew at that time, I would decide the same today,” Weinberg told the newspaper Bild.

July 24. A 21-year-old Syrian asylum-seeker murdered a 45-year-old Polish woman and her unborn baby in a machete attack in Reutlingen.

July 24. A 40-year-old migrant from Eritrea raped a 79-year-old woman in a cemetery in Ibbenbüren. The woman, who lives in a local nursing home, was visiting the grave of her late sister at 6AM when the attack occurred. The migrant, who has been living as a refugee in Germany since 2013, was arrested at the scene. He is unlikely to be deported, however, because Eritrea is considered a conflict zone.

July 25. A 45-year-old Palestinian brandishing a “Rambo knife” and shouting “Allahu Akbar” tried to behead a doctor in Bonn. The attacker’s 19-year-old son had complained about the doctor’s treatment for a fractured leg. While holding the doctor down on the floor, the man said: “Apologize to my son. Go down on your knees and kiss his hand.” The attacker was arrested and then set free.

July 25. Sahra Wagenknecht, the leader of the Left Party (Die Linke), lashed out at Merkel’s open-door migration policy:

“The events of the past few days show that the acceptance and integration of a large number of refugees and migrants presents significant problems. It is much more difficult than Merkel tried to persuade us last fall with her reckless ‘We can do it’ [‘Wir schaffen das‘]. The government must now do everything possible to ensure that people in our country can feel safe again.”

July 25. Frank Henkel, a CDU Senator from Berlin, said:

“No one should delude themselves: We obviously have imported some brutal people who are capable of committing barbaric crimes in our country. We have to say this clearly and without taboos. This also means that we must deal aggressively with Islamism. If we do not, we risk that German politics will be perceived as being detached from reality.”

July 25. Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière revealed that German authorities are currently investigating 59 refugees because of the “suspicion that they are involved in terrorist structures.”

July 25. Following a series of Islam-related attacks in a week, the President of Bavaria, Horst Seehofer, said: “We must know who is in our country.”

July 26. Seehofer, said: “Islamist terrorism has arrived in Germany.”

July 27. Police raided a mosque in Hildesheim. They also searched eight apartments belonging to members of the mosque. Boris Pistorius, the interior minister of Lower Saxony, said: “The mosque in Hildesheim is a national hot-spot for the radical Salafist scene. After months of preparation, with these raids today, we have taken an important step towards banning the group.”

July 27. Police in Ludwigsburg arrested a 15-year-old who they said was planning a mass-shooting similar to the July 22 attack in Munich. During a search of the teenager’s home, police found more than 300 rounds of ammunition, as well as knives, chemicals and bullet-proof vests.

July 28. Speaking at an annual summer press conference in Berlin, Merkel insisted there would be no change to her open-door migration stance: “We decided to fulfill our humanitarian tasks. Refusing humanitarian support would be something I would not want to do and I would not recommend this to Germany…. Anxiety and fear cannot guide our political decisions.” She also said: “Let me be clear, we are at war with Islamic State; we are not at war with Islam.”

July 29. Thomas Jahn, the vice chairman of the Christian Social Union (CSU), lambasted Merkel’s open-door migration policy: “We need to control our borders. That is the most important thing at the moment. And we need to send the dangerous people with Islamist ideology back to the countries outside Europe and the European Union.”

July 30. CSU politician Jens Spahn said: “My impression is that we all underestimated a year ago what was in store for us with this big refugee and migration movement. Integration is a Herculean task that does not end with a three-week language course.” He also called for a burqa ban: “A ban on the full body veil — that is the niqab and the burka — is overdue… I do not want to have to encounter any burqa in this country. In that sense, I am a burqaphobe.”

Soeren Kern is a Senior Fellow at the New York-based Gatestone Institute. He is also Senior Fellow for European Politics at the Madrid-based Grupo de Estudios Estratégicos / Strategic Studies Group. Follow him on Facebook and on Twitter. His first book, Global Fire, will be out in 2016.

A Month of Islam and Multiculturalism in Germany: January 2017 by Soeren Kern

  • “If we are serious about the fight against Islamism and terrorism, then it must also be a cultural struggle.” — German Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel.

  • German authorities issued 105,000 visas for so-called family reunifications in 2016, a 50% increase over the 70,000 visas issued in 2015, according to Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The 105,000 visas for family members were in addition to the 280,000 new asylum seekers who arrived in Germany in 2016.
  • Police say Sudanese migrants, many of whom were allowed to enter Germany without having their fingerprints taken, have “created a business model” out of social security fraud. Local officials have been accused of covering up the fraud.
  • An employee at a social security office handed her boss a file with 30 cases of suspected fraud. After he refused to act, she contacted the police. She was fired for “overstepping her authority.”
  • Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble revealed that the migrant crisis would cost German taxpayers €43 billion ($46 billion) during 2016 (€21.7 billion) and 2017 (€21.3 billion).
  • The Bishop of Regensburg, Rudolf Voderholzer, said there could be no reconciliation between Christians and Muslims. Islam is a “post-Christian phenomenon, with the claim to negate the core content of Christianity,” he said.

January 1. Some 2,000 “highly aggressive” migrants from Africa, Asia and the Middle East gathered at the central train station in Cologne and the square in front of the iconic Cologne Cathedral, where mass sexual assaults occurred on New Year’s Eve 2015. A massive police presence consisting of 1,700 officers deterred mayhem. Police reported three sexual assaults on New Year’s Eve 2016, compared to more than a thousand on the same day in 2015.

January 1. In Berlin, at least 22 women were sexually assaulted during New Year’s Eve celebrations at the Brandenburg Gate, despite the presence of 1,700 police officers. Police initially reported six assaults, but after inquiries from local media raised that number. In Hamburg, at least 14 women were sexually assaulted. Police arrested three Iraqis, three Syrians, two Afghans, one Eritrean and one German-Russian.

January 2. Greens Party Leader Simone Peter accused the Cologne Police Department of racial profiling after a tweet referred to North African migrants as “Nafris.” The head of the DPolG, Ernst Walter, explained that “Nafri” is not derogatory but rather a technical acronym used by the police to refer to “North African intensive offender” (nordafrikanische Intensivtäter). “If a North African person is suspected of committing a crime, he is a ‘Nafri,'” Walter said. Cologne Police Chief Jürgen Mathies added: “From the experiences of the past New Year’s Eve, from experience gained by police raids as a whole, a clear impression has emerged here about which persons are to be checked. They are not gray-haired older men or blond-haired young women.”

January 2. Police in Saarland arrested Hasan A., a 38-year-old asylum seeker from Syria who solicited €180,000 ($192,000) in funds from the Islamic State in order to carry out a high-casualty terrorist attack in Germany. The prosecutor’s office in Saarbrücken said the man asked the Islamic State for the money to purchase eight vehicles (€22,500 each) which would be camouflaged as police cars, loaded with 400-500 kilos of explosives, and exploded into a large crowd. Hasan said he wanted the money to support his family in Syria, not to carry out attacks in Germany.

January 3. Amnesty International called for an investigation of the police in Cologne for the alleged “racial profiling” of North African migrants who were suspected of promoting violence on New Year’s Eve.

January 3. Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière called for a “reorganization” of the security structures in Germany in order to confront the challenges of terrorism, large influxes of asylum seekers and cyberattacks. He said the federal government should be given more powers than it has now.

January 5. North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) Regional Criminal Police Director Dieter Schürmann revealed that Anis Amri, the 24-year-old Tunisian Salafist who carried out the jihadist attack on the Christmas market in Berlin on December 19, 2016, was known by authorities to be a threat to security as early as February 2016 but that they had found no evidence to arrest him. Schürmann also said that Amri had also used a total of 14 different identities under multiple names to collect social welfare benefits.

January 6. Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel called for a “culture war” to defeat Islamism. “If we are serious about the fight against Islamism and terrorism, then it must also be a cultural struggle,” he said. “We must strengthen the cohesion of society and ensure that neighborhoods are not neglected, villages are not degenerated and people are not becoming more and more radicalized,” he added. Gabriel also said that “Salafist mosques must be banned, the communities dissolved and the preachers deported, as soon as possible.”

January 7. A group of five “Black Africans” (Schwarzafrikanern) sexually assaulted a 28-year-old woman in Hamburg. The woman, a nurse at the Asklepios-Klinik St. Georg, was walking to her car after her shift ended when she heard someone screaming for help in an adjacent park. When she went to lend a hand she was ambushed by the men, assaulted and robbed.

January 7. Asif M., a 26-year-old asylum seeker from Pakistan, appeared in court on charges he raped one woman and attempted to rape five others in Berlin-Steglitz. He insisted that he was the victim: “As a refugee, it is difficult to find a girlfriend.”

January 7. An Emnid poll for Bild am Sonntag found that 58% of German women believe that public places have become less safe due the migration crisis. Nearly half (48%) say they avoid certain areas in their place of residence when it is dark, and 16% now carry pepper spray when they are on their own after dark.

January 7. Intelligence Chief Hans-Georg Maaßen warned that Germany’s Salafist scene is not only growing, but also becoming more decentralized, thus making it more difficult to monitor. He said the number of Salafists in Germany was 9,700, up 500 from 9,200 in October 2016.

January 11. The Interior Ministry reported that a total of 321,371 migrants arrived in Germany in 2016, compared to 1,091,894 in 2015. Of the new arrivals in 2016, 280,000 were asylum seekers, compared to 890,000 asylum seekers in 2015. As if the statistics were not sufficiently complicated, a total of 745,545 people applied for asylum in 2016, compared to 476,649 who applied for asylum in 2015. The 2016 figure includes migrants who arrived in Germany in 2015 but did not apply for asylum until 2016. Around 35% of the asylum seekers in 2016 were from Syria, 17% from Afghanistan and 13% from Iraq.

January 11. Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière said that Germany’s security apparatus must be updated in order to combat Islamic terrorism. “Our security architecture dates back to the fifties and sixties when we were dealing mostly with regional crime,” he said.

January 12. Germany’s largest Islamic association, the Turkish-Islamic Union for Religious Affairs (DITIB), admitted that some of its preachers acted as informants for the Turkish government. DITIB is financed by the Turkish government’s Directorate for Religious Affairs, known in Turkish as Diyanet. DITIB has been described as the “extended arm” of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who uses it to promote Turkish nationalism and to prevent integration among the Turkish diaspora. The spies sent information about followers of Fethullah Gülen, a 78-year-old cleric based in the United States and whom Turkey accuses of plotting a failed military coup in July 2016.

January 13. A YouGov poll found that 52% of Germans believe that police in Cologne did a good job on New Year’s Eve. The poll also showed that 63% of Germans do not find racial profiling problematic, compared to 27% who do. The poll followed criticism of a police operation in Cologne on New Year’s Eve in which hundreds of “Nafris” — a term for North African criminals — were arrested.

January 14. A “southerner” (südländischer Typ) assaulted an 80-year-old woman in Leipzig-Neulindenau. The woman was working in her garden at 3 o’clock in the afternoon when she noticed that a man was loitering nearby. He lunged at the woman and beat her so badly that she was hospitalized. Before getting into the ambulance, she asked someone to take a photograph of her bloody face to draw public attention to rising migrant crime. Her picture was published by Bild, the largest-circulation newspaper in Germany. “It cannot be that you have to be afraid of being on the streets even during the middle of the day,” she said. The perpetrator remains at large.

January 18. Member of the German Parliament Burkhard Lischka revealed that German authorities lost track of three of the 547 jihadists who are being monitored by German intelligence.

January 18. A 27-year-old Kosovar was sentenced to one year and ten months of probation for sexually assaulting a 27-year-old woman in Freiburg. The man followed the woman into a restroom at a night club, told her that he was a narcotics detective, forced her to undress and then tried to rape her.

January 19. German authorities issued 105,000 visas for so-called family reunifications in 2016, a 50% increase over the 70,000 visas issued in 2015, according to Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Almost all the visas were issued to Syrians and Iraqis. Family reunifications — individuals whose asylum applications are approved are subsequently allowed to bring additional family members to Germany — are not included in asylum application statistics. In other words, the 105,000 visas for family members were in addition to the 280,000 new asylum seekers who arrived in Germany in 2016.

January 19. Germany took back some 12,000 migrants from other European countries, in accordance with the so-called Dublin Regulation, a law that requires people seeking refuge within the EU to do so in the first European country they reach. Germany took 3,700 migrants from Sweden, 1,686 from the Netherlands, 1,277 from Switzerland, 1,109 from Denmark and 763 from Belgium, according to the Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung. The migrants involve asylum seekers who submitted asylum requests in Germany but moved on to other European countries before the requests were processed by German authorities.

January 19. Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel threatened to cut development aid to countries which refuse to take back asylum seekers whose applications have been rejected. The threat applies mainly to North African migrants from Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia. “It cannot be that a country takes the development aid, but not its own citizens, if they cannot get asylum with us because they simply have no reason to escape from their country,” he said.

January 20. The trial began of Abubaker C., a 27-year-old Pakistani man who strangled 70-year-old Maria Müller in her bed in Bad Friedrichshall, and then painted verses from the Koran on her bedroom walls. Prosecutors said the murder was religiously motivated: The Sunni Muslim apparently murdered the woman because she was a devout Roman Catholic.

January 21. A 47-year-old asylum seeker from Syria was sentenced to one year and nine months in prison for raping a 44-year-old mentally disabled woman in Soest. The suspect, who has been living in an asylum shelter in Welver at German taxpayer expense since 2003, had 23 previous convictions for offenses including assault, robbery and fare evasion. A neurologist who tended to the Syrian during his 13-year stay in Germany told the court that the man is “untreatable” (Therapieunfähig). “When he is drunk, he is unpredictable,” she said.

January 23. Muslims in Hamburg are finding it difficult to bury their dead: German burial laws are incompatible with Islamic Sharia law, according to Die Welt. “The different burial cultures must be brought together,” the paper stated. “The German funeral and cemetery regulations are incompatible with Islam in some respects. Believing Muslims reject cremation. The dead must be buried as soon as possible and in linen cloths. It is important that the earth is ‘virgin’…the soil should not be polluted by ‘unbelievers.’ The dead must also be able to rest for eternity…a re-occupation of the tomb is impossible even if the remains of the deceased are completely disappeared.”

January 25. Social security fraud perpetrated by asylum seekers is costing taxpayers in the state of Lower Saxony millions of euros, according to the Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung. Police reported 2,644 known cases of fraud in 2016, including 487 cases by asylum seekers, up from 351 such cases in 2015. The fraud involves migrants using multiple identities to collect social welfare benefits in different cities and towns. In the city of Braunschweig alone, some 240 migrants defrauded the state of €4.8 million ($5 million) in 2016. Police say Sudanese migrants, many of whom were allowed to enter Germany without having their fingerprints taken, have “created a business model” out of social security fraud. Local officials have been accused of covering up the fraud, which came to light after an employee at a social security office contacted the police. In January 2016, she had handed her boss a file with 30 cases of suspected fraud. After he refused to act, she contacted the police in May 2016. She was fired for “overstepping her authority.”

January 26. A court in Celle sentenced a 16-year-old German-Moroccan female jihadist to six years in prison for stabbing and seriously wounding a police officer, the first lone-wolf terrorist attack in Germany inspired by the Islamic State. The incident occurred at the central train station in Hanover on the afternoon of February 26, 2016, when two police officers noticed that the girl — identified only as Safia S. — was observing and following them. The officers approached the girl, who was wearing an Islamic headscarf, and asked her to present her identification papers. After handing over her ID, she stabbed one of the officers in the neck with a six-centimeter kitchen knife. According to police, the attack happened so quickly that the 34-year-old officer was unable to defend himself. “The perpetrator did not display any emotion,” a police spokesperson said. “Her only concern was for her headscarf. She was concerned that her headscarf be put back on properly after she was arrested. Whether the police officer survived, she did not care.”

January 26. Upkeep for the 13,600 unaccompanied child migrants (unbegleiteten minderjährigen Flüchtlingen) in North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) will cost German taxpayers €632 million ($670 million) in 2017. Child migrants are arriving in NRW at the rate of 300-400 each month. Each child migrant costs €4,500 a month to maintain, in addition to an annual administrative fee of €3,100 (Verwaltungspauschal). The children are from more than 60 countries, including Afghanistan (37%), Syria (36%) and Iraq (11%). Over 90% of child migrants are male.

January 27. Due to positive net migration (more people entering the country than leaving it), the German population increased by 1.14 million in 2015, and by another 750,000 in 2016, to reach an all-time high of 82.8 million at the end of 2016, according to preliminary estimates by Destatis.

January 27. Muslim students at the Emscher-Lippe school in Gelsenkirchen refused to participate in Holocaust remembrance activities. Some 40% of the 550 students at the school are Muslim.

January 27. Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble revealed that the migrant crisis would cost German taxpayers €43 billion ($46 billion) during 2016 (€21.7 billion) and 2017 (€21.3 billion).

January 28. Interior Minister Thomas de Maizière said that Anis Amri, the 24-year-old Tunisian who carried out the December 19 jihadist attack on a Christmas market in Berlin, could have been deported in October 2016, but that officials in North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) failed to do so. De Maizière’s statement contradicted claims by NRW Interior Minister Ralf Jäger, who said he had no legal authority to deport Amri, whose asylum application had been denied.

January 30. Süleyman D., a 25-year-old German of Turkish descent, was arrested for raping one woman and attempting to rape two more at the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich.

January 30. The Bishop of Regensburg, Rudolf Voderholzer, said there could be no reconciliation between Christians and Muslims. Islam is a “post-Christian phenomenon, with the claim to negate the core content of Christianity,” he said. “Only those who do not know their own faith or do not take it seriously can consider a comprehensive integration of Islam as possible.”

The Bishop of Regensburg, Rudolf Voderholzer, said on January 30 that there could be no reconciliation between Christians and Muslims. Islam is a “post-Christian phenomenon, with the claim to negate the core content of Christianity,” he said. “Only those who do not know their own faith or do not take it seriously can consider a comprehensive integration of Islam as possible.” (Image source: Wikimedia Commons/StagiaireMGIMO)

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