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Racist structures in Germany help cover up Islamophobic crimes, says expert

March 12, 2024 at 3:46 pm

The police talk to the young boy who brought firecrackers during Palestinian demonstrators march to demand a ceasefire in the current Gaza conflict on December 28, 2023 in Berlin, Germany. [Photo by Maryam Majd/Getty Images]

Anti-Islamic, racist and hate crimes are protected in Germany and judges approach the cases of Muslims with prejudice, according to an expert, Anadolu Agency reports.

Mehmet Osman Gulyesil, an academic at the Law Faculty of Humboldt University of Berlin, told Anadolu that some anti-Muslim attacks were “deliberately covered up by racist structures in the German police force”.

“Attacks targeting Muslims can sometimes be treated as ordinary crimes. At this point, it is necessary to mention the institutional crisis experienced in the police force in recent years,” he said.

One of the most important strategies of the far right is to “infiltrate sensitive state security institutions” such as the police, judiciary and military, he added.

He reminded that the terrorist group, National Socialist Underground (NSU), which killed a total of 10 people, eight of whom were Turks, in Germany between 2000 and 2007, was protected despite the murders.

“Police reports are used to hide criminal cases. They are trying to portray the suspects as if they were not Neo-Nazi groups, but rather the fights of Turks and Muslims themselves,” he said, adding that this issue raised questions about whether there are racist and anti-Muslim structures in the police force.

Underlining that the beliefs and freedoms of Muslims are under threat in the field of law, he said in some cases involving Muslims, the attitudes and discretion of judges have reached an “unacceptable point”.

“We witness scandalous attitudes from the questions the judges ask about Islam,” he said.

Especially judges, just like the police, cannot make an evaluation independently of people’s religion, belief, or ethnic origin when deciding a case, he said, adding that they make controversial decisions with “racist motives”.

These incidents continue to increase due to the lack of an institution that can be considered as an umbrella organisation for Muslims in German society, he said.

“Although Islam is the largest religious minority in Germany, there is not yet a special representative at the federal state level who fights against Islamophobia and proposes the necessary measures… But the lack of an institution that represents Muslims, in general, is a big problem,” he added.

READ: Muslims concerned about rise of Islamophobia in Germany