Germany 'high threat level' alert - How far-right, jihadists, ISIS threaten security

The role of geopolitical unrest

Screenshot 5 13 far-right, Germany, JIHADISTS

"The already tense security situation has worsened further in 2023," Interior Minister Nancy Fesser said and warned of "growing tendencies to destabilize democracy in Germany."

For his part, the head of the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, Thomas Haldenvag, spoke of a "very high level of threats" and noted that the Islamist scene remains strong.

The role of geopolitical unrest

Presenting the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution's annual report earlier today, Ms Fesser and Mr Haldevag spoke about the impact on Germany's internal security of the wars in Ukraine and the Middle East, as well as Russia's espionage efforts and China. "We must actively defend our democracy, which is strong, but is also under significant pressure," the minister stressed.

"Destabilization of democracy in Germany" - "We will not allow ourselves to be intimidated"

According to the Constitution Protection Agency, the number of politically and religiously motivated crimes more than tripled in 2023, while violent crimes of the same category increased by 67,4%.

Most of them had an Islamist background, Haldevag noted, and explained that since Hamas attacked Israel, the threat from Islamist terrorism, either from individual jihadi-motivated actors or from organized jihadist groups, has increased significantly, while the number of of crimes with a foreign ideological extremist motive increased by 56,6%.

"More sophisticated" attacks are expected in the future, he added. "It is absolutely clear to us that we will not allow ourselves to be intimidated," assured the interior minister.

The increase in crimes in numbers

The report also notes that the number of crimes motivated by right-wing extremism also increased by 22,4%. As Mr. Haldenwag mentioned, the increase in this category is not only due to the Alternative for Germany (AfD) and its youth organization, Junge Alternative, but also to other, organized and non-organized, groups.

At the same time, crimes attributed to the organization "Citizens of the Reich" decreased by 30,4%. In contrast, the number of crimes by the far left increased by 10,4% and the number of violent acts against the police and security authorities increased in the previous year by 65,6%.

An increase is also recorded in the crimes committed in the context of the "fight for the climate". In 2022 there were 56 such incidents and the following year 293.

The report includes for the first time as a "suspected far-right case" the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement, which is "linked to secular Palestinian extremism through its anti-Semitic positions." With its campaign, BDS calls for a general economic boycott, the withdrawal of investment funds and the imposition of sanctions against the state of Israel.