Germany to tighten mosque security after racist attack

BERLIN (AA): Germany will step up security around mosques and migrant organizations following a racist terror attack in Hanau, Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said on Friday.

“What happened in Hanau was clearly a racism motivated terror attack,” Seehofer told a news conference in Berlin, adding that far-right extremism has become a very serious threat to democracy in Germany.

He said police presence will be increased across the country ahead of major public events, and authorities will take additional security measures to protect mosques and migrant organizations due to the growing threat posed by the far-right.

A 43-year-old far-right extremist attacked two shisha cafes on Wednesday night in the western town of Hanau, killing nine people with migration background and wounding six others.

The perpetrator, identified by the authorities as Tobias R., posted a manifesto on the internet detailing his racist views and plans for ethnic cleansing.

Five people with Turkish roots died in the racist attack.

It was the third major terrorist attack committed by a far-right extremist in Germany within several months.

Last week, the police dismantled a far-right terror cell and arrested 12 suspects over plans to attack six mosques to provoke a civil-war-like situation in the country.

Germany has witnessed growing racism and Islamophobia in recent years, fueled by the propaganda of neo-Nazi groups and the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party.

A country of over 80 million people, Germany has the second-largest Muslim population in Western Europe after France. Among the country’s nearly 4.7 million Muslims, 3 million are of Turkish origin.

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