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CRIME

German-language terror video threatens attacks

An Islamist video threatening attacks on European allies of the United States has surfaced on the Internet, German police said Friday, but US experts said it was not new.

German-language terror video threatens attacks
Photo: DPA

ARD public television said the video featured a hooded militant calling himself Abu Hamsa.

“To the European Union and all their allies who help the Americans, the Mujahideen are on their way to you, and Allah permitting, they will destroy you all,” he says in the German language recording, according to a transcript from the IntelCenter in Washington.

The man also threatens the Netherlands and Denmark over controversial cartoons lampooning the Islamic prophet Mohammed.

In an email statement, IntelCenter’s chief executive Ben Venzke said the video was released on April 12 by As-Sahab, Al-Qaeda’s video production unit, with the title “How to Prevent a Repeat of the Gaza Holocaust”.

A spokesman for the Federal Crime Office confirmed the video’s existence, but added that Germany’s terror threat assessment remains unchanged. “The content does not change anything about the current threat,” the spokesman, Michael Albertz, told AFP.

Several German-language videos with militants threatening attacks have appeared in recent months, some of them attributed to an Uzbekistan-based Islamic extremist group believed to have ties to Al-Qaeda.

Four suspected Islamic militants went on trial in the German city of Duesseldorf on Wednesday accused of plotting devastating bombings against US citizens in Germany.

The group allegedly planned the attacks to punish Germany for its military involvement in Afghanistan, where it has about 3,700 soldiers fighting under NATO command.

CRIME

German man jailed for killing petrol station worker in mask row

A 50-year-old German man was jailed for life Tuesday for shooting dead a petrol station cashier because he was angry about being told to wear a mask while buying beer.

German man jailed for killing petrol station worker in mask row

The September 2021 murder in the western town of Idar-Oberstein shocked Germany, which saw a vocal anti-mask and anti-vaccine movement emerge in response to the government’s coronavirus restrictions.

The row started when 20-year-old student worker Alex W. asked the man to put on a mask inside the shop, as required in all German stores at the time.

After a brief argument, the man left.

The perpetrator – identified only as Mario N. – returned about an hour and a half later, this time wearing a mask. But as he bought his six-pack of beer to the till, he took off his mask and another argument ensued.

He then pulled out a revolver and shot the cashier in the head point-blank.

On Tuesday, the district court in Bad-Kreuznach convicted Mario N. of murder and unlawful possession of a firearm, and handed him a life sentence.

READ ALSO: Shock in Germany after cashier shot dead in Covid mask row

Under German law, people given a life sentence can usually seek parole after 15 years. His defence team had sought a sentence of manslaughter, rather than murder.

At the start of the trial, prosecutor Nicole Frohn told how Mario N. had felt increasingly angry about the measures imposed to curb the pandemic, seeing them as an infringement on his rights.

“Since he knew he couldn’t reach the politicians responsible, he decided to kill him (Alex W.),” she said.

Mario N. turned himself in to police the day after the shooting.

German has relaxed most of its coronavirus rules, although masks are still required in some settings, such as public transport.

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