The German interior ministry is planning to ban the terrorist organization calling itself "Islamic State," according to media reports. However, there are still some hurdles before the ban takes effect.
Once the ban is implemented, persons displaying symbols such as red flags with the words "Islamic State" could be prosecuted, German national news broadcaster ARD reported on Thursday.
The German interior ministry has not commented on the media reports although on Tuesday, Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said that his government was looking at measures to deal with the "Islamic State" (IS) in Germany.
"There will be decisions very soon in this respect," de Maiziere said during a session in the German parliament.
Despite the ban, classifying the "IS" as a foreign terrorist organization would require a decision from the German courts.
Prior to its decision, the central government deliberated with state authorities to check whether the legal requirements for a ban on the IS exist in their respective areas.
ARD reported that German politicians from all parties have been calling for a prohibition of the organization, which has found some sympathizers in Germany. Recently, IS supporters attacked members of the minority Yazidi community in a refugee camp in Bielefeld and Berlin.
According to German government estimates, roughly 400 of its own citizens have left for Iraq and Syria to fight alongside the jihadist group, who seek to establish a caliphate on the basis of the orthodox Islamic Sharia law.
Meanwhile, Germany has decided to offer military support to Kurdish militias fighting the IS in Iraq. US President Barack Obama is also trying to build an international coalition to expand US attacks on the militants, who have seized control of vast areas in northern Iraq and Syria.
mg/kms (Reuters, dpa)