Jens Spahn, a senior member of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union, wants an “Islam law” in Germany to regulate Muslim communities.
German authorities have warned about the rapid growth of the Islamist scene in recent years. Spahn, who serves as Germany’s deputy finance minister, said authorities “need to know what happens in mosques” and keep better records on the type of activities that take place behind closed doors.
The “Islam laws” would include German tests for imams and a registry of all mosques since authorities “did not know how many mosques there are in Germany, where they are or who finances them.”
“Do we really know if their sermons are being made in accordance with our laws? And it’s about more than that,” Spahn told Deutsche Welle (DW) Thursday. “Is it enough, just to ask that they don’t break the law? Should they not encourage cooperation and integration?”‘
More transparency and sermons in German would also help diminish “prejudice” against the Muslim community, according to Spahn.
“They speak only for a minority of Muslims. They are the wrong partners,” Spahn told DW.
The Salafist movement in Germany nearly doubled from 3,800 members in 2011 to 7,500 in 2015, according to government estimates. A report from January reveals the number is now above 9,700.
“It’s of great concern to us that this scene is not only growing, but it is also very diversified. There is not just one, two, three or four people who have a say,” Germany’s domestic terror chief Hans-Georg Maassen said in January, according to AFP. “Rather, there are many people who dominate this Salafist scene. And all these people have to be watched.”
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