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Germany

Minister Demands Central Islamic Database

Lower Saxony's interior minister Uwe Schünemann on Wednesday demanded the establishment of a central Islamic database compiled by the police and other security authorities from the government and other German states in an effort to counter terrorism. The conservative opposition politician said during the publication of Lower Saxony's constitution protection report in Hanover that Islamic terrorism and extremism posed a great challenge in the state. The Islamic organization Milli Görus, which is under surveillance of German constitution protection authorities, has some 2,600 members in Lower Saxony alone. Schünemann said that Milli Görus propagated a philosophy that was against integration of Muslims and in favor of the creation of a parallel Islamic society. At the same time the minister added, "The majority of Muslims -- in the so-called Islamic countries as well as in Germany -- are law-abiding citizens, who practise their religion peacefully." The constitution protection report said that in 2003 there were around 57,000 foreign extremists all over Germany and around 5,7000 in Lower Saxony, refuting the impression that Lower Saxony was a hub for foreign or Islamic extremists.