Results tagged “Germany”
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A classified German intelligence report said a "German camp" has been established in Syria for German-speaking jihadists and that German Islamists in Syria have set up media centers to foster recruitment. Eight German jihadists are thought to have died in Syria. The number of European jihadists in Syria has risen to about 1,000, much higher than the 250 estimated in late 2012.
German intelligence estimates that more than 1,000 Europeans, including 150 Muslims from Kosovo, are fighting against the Assad regime in Syria.
Germany's spy chief said that about 170 German Islamists have traveled to Syria for jihad, and warned that 50 have gone to Syria in recent months. Chancellor Merkel appears likely to win a third term in general elections today.
General Wieker, the head of the German military, told lawmakers that the influence of al-Qaeda linked forces within the Syrian opposition was becoming stronger and stronger. A German newspaper claimed that a German spy ship intercepted calls in recent months from Syrian commanders asking the Assad regime for permission to use chemical weapons but that the permission was repeatedly denied. Another German news report said that German intelligence and the CIA jointly tracked German Islamists from 2005 until 2010, when the cooperation ended.
Chancellor Merkel pushed back from Western plans for an immediate military intervention in Syira, agreeing with Russian president Vladimir Putin that the Syrian crisis can be resolved only by political action, and said that discussions at the UN Security Council should lead to a "unanimous and quick international reaction." Such reaction is a necessary response to the "inhumane poison gas attack against Syrian civilians," she said. Merkel also called on Germans to welcome Syrian refugees.
A German media report said intelligence sources claimed that the recently intercepted communications between al Qaeda leaders included discussion of attacking European railways. German authorities are said to have taken discreet measures in response, including the deployment of plain-clothed police in stations and on trains.
German authorities have asked Sweden to investigate an Iranian linked to a plan by extremist cleric Mullah Krekar to create a terror network of Europeans aimed at establishing an Islamic caliphate in Kurdistan. At least 10 people, residing in Norway, Germany, the UK, Switzerland, and Iraq, are suspected of links to the network, known as "Rawt."