German mosque used by Sept. 11 attackers shut down

Aug 9th, 2010 | By admin | Category: Featured

In October 2004, he was arrested in Hamburg on a Spanish warrant accusing him of involvement with al-Qaida and alleging that he was a bin Laden financier.

His extradition was blocked by Germany’s high court and he was eventually released. In 2006, German prosecutors closed their own investigation of him, saying there was insufficient evidence to show that Darkazanli supported al-Qaida.

“He is a hate preacher,” the head of the Hamburg anti-terror department, Lothar Bergmann, said at a news conference, the German news agency DAPD reported. Manfred Murck, the deputy head of the domestic intelligence agency’s local branch, called him an “elder statesman of jihad.”

The Hamburg interior ministry said a group of 11 militants who had traveled to military training camps in Uzbekistan in March 2009 was formed at Taiba mosque.

It said Monday that “the training courses, sermons and seminars by the association as well texts published on the group’s home page not only violate the constitution but also radicalize listeners and readers.”

Most of the group’s members were either German converts, of Middle Eastern origin or from the Caucasus region.

“A very important factor for the radicalization of the group members was certainly their joint visits to the mosque,” the intelligence report stated.

It appears that one man from the group joined the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, a terrorist organization in Central Asia, the report said.

A spokesman for an association of 30 mosques in Hamburg condemned the authorities’ closure of Taiba mosque.

“I think this was a wrong move,” Norbert Mueller of the Schura Association of Islamic Communities in Hamburg told The Associated Press. “Closing mosques does not make jihadists disappear.”

The radical supporters of Taiba had been isolated among Hamburg’s Muslim community, Mueller said. He warned that they would now try to infiltrate other Muslim groups in the city.

“At least it was easy to keep them under surveillance as long as they all met at Taiba,” Mueller said.

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