Alwaght- As part of its service to the Israeli policies and actions against the Muslims, Germany recently expelled the deputy head of Hamburg Islamic Center (IZH).
German authorities claimed that Sayyed Sulaiman Mousavifar along with support to what they called "extremist Shiite organizations and militant groups was raising funds for Lebanese Hezbollah movement with whose leaders, Berlin said, he had close ties. According to the allegations, Mousavifar also posted videos and photos of Hezbollah on Facebook, and also participated in an anti-Semitic demonstrations four years ago.
A Hamburg court has ruled that Mousavifar has three months to leave Germany; otherwise he will face heavy consequences and could face up to three years in prison if he breaks the law. Last year, the IZH was expelled from the executive board of the Hamburg Council of Islamic Communities.
Hamburg's interior minister warned that "anyone who openly supports terrorist organizations and terrorist sponsors poses a serious threat to our security. I think the most important action is to fire them immediately."
Earlier, the Hamburg Home Security Department had announced that it had obtained documents showing that the center, which is a mere cultural institution, was one of the direct centers of the Iranian government's activities in Germany. It was also announced that the IZH has direct cooperation and relations with Hezbollah.
Reacting to the ruling, Mousavifar asserted that the Islamic centers where he lectured have official licenses and are no linked to the Lebanese movement, adding that Quds Day marches were legal and licensed and that he would follow the case through legal paths.
The Islamic Center in Hamburg is one of the most important Islamic institutions in Germany and one of the oldest Shiite mosques in Europe. Its cornerstone was laid in 1951 but its completion was delayed by shortage of funding. When Ayatollah Mohammad Beheshti, a prominent Shiite cleric, migrated to Hamburg in 1965, he advanced the construction work and then activities of the center. After that, the center grabbed the attention of other Islamic faiths and was promoted to the status of an international Mosque, to an extent that in its Friday prayers Muslim of various faiths and nationalities took part. This continued in next years and Hamburg Mosque rose to be a symbol of Islamic unity in Germany.
Holding religious and cultural seminars, educational classes, weekly meetings and congregational prayers, and meetings on special occasions have been among the activities of this Islamic center over the past seven decades. A German-based Islamologist said of the importance of the center that it is an place for dialogue among followers of different religions, and that the center conducts extensive religious research, and even many Jews opposed to Israeli policies and Zionism visit the center.
Fear of IZH enlightenment in Europe
The Hamburg Islamic Center plays an important role in elaboration on Islamic in Germany, where thousands annually visit the center to learn about Islam and convert to it. It was these activities that frightened the German officials. The center also sought to make it clear to the European citizens that Judaism is a divine religion, different from what the Zionists were promoting among the people. It is said that the growing anti-Zionist protests in Germany and support for the Palestinian people and their cause has been partly the result of enlightening activities of this Islamic Center, something making it a target for German officials' anti-Islamic actions.
Anti-Islamic wave has been on the rise in recent years in Europe as European leaders are concerned about spread of Islam in the Continent. The IZH has a leading role in promotion of Islamic thought. In response, German officials are seeking to damage the Islam's image with empty allegations and promote the idea that the IZH is propagating extremism in Europe. Islam is a religion of peaceful co-existence and tolerance but the image shown in Europe of it is totally different.
The German government's anti-Islamic policies have led extremists in the country to desecrate Islamic sanctities. A German human rights center in a report held that between 2014 and 2022, there were nearly 840 attacks, vandalization, and threats against mosques. Germany has the second largest Muslim population in Europe after France, and officials are concerned about the spread of Islam in their country.
Germany's double standards in dealing with Shiites and Wahhabism
A European leader in recent years in its opposition to Islam and Shiites, Germany has taken several steps to counter Shiite-linked Islamic centers.
The German government blacklists Hezbollah as a terrorist group in 2020, and closed down some Islamic centers allegedly cooperating with the movement. Last year, the activities of the three associations Al-Mustafa, Fatemi, and Imam Mahdi in Germany were banned for alleged affiliation with Hezbollah, and the centers and mosques linked to them were shut down.
German officials claimed that the Mustafa Association was actively disseminating and promoting violence or serious acts contrary to international law like terrorism against Israel. German officials claim that Hezbollah works to annihilate Israel and does not respect international law.
These claims come while the Israeli regime is itself the biggest terrorist state and over the past decades shed Palestinian blood in heinous crimes, encouraged by silence of sham advocates of human rights in the West.
Hezbollah has dealt a heavy blow to Israeli interests in Lebanon and the region over the past two decades, preventing Tel Aviv from pursuing its territorial expansion and ambitions in the region and triggering calls from Israeli officials to ban the resistant movement's activities in their countries. Actually, all the anti-Shiite actions in the West are at the request of the Israelis and in their support.
German government bans Shiite centers while at the same time gives leeway for extremist Wahhabi institutions tied to Saudi Arabia. Exploiting waves of hatred and terrorism the Wahhabi movements lead in Europe, the European governments introduce Islam as a religion of violence and radicalism.
A distinguished German scholar who converted to Islam several years ago suggests that due to restrictions on Muslim activity, what is presented in Germany is not genuine Islam, rather it is a version of Wahhabism which is embraced by Germans due to information poverty. German officials are well aware that Wahhabism, not Hezbollah and Shiite centers, is a serious threat to Europe but, driven by interests, they appease Saudi Arabia as the sponsor of Wahhabism. In order to continue selling arms to the Saudi regime– which are used to kill the Yemeni people– and attract Saudi investors to bankrupt German companies, German leaders have given in to the freedom of Wahhabi activity in their country.
Israeli lobby's influence in German politics
Any actions against Islamic and Shiite centers in Europe bear signs of hands of the Israelis. The Israeli lobby has always used it sway over European leaders to restrict Islamic activities in the Continent. This time, too, it managed to persuade the German government to impose restrictions on the IZH.
Expulsion of the IZH deputy head comes a few months after Israeli media, citing German intelligence sources, reported that this center had advocacy for General Qassem Soleimani of Iran, commemorated him, and called him a "heroic martyr." General Soleimani was assassinated by a US drone strike at Baghdad International Airport in 2020 while on an official visit to Iraq. These information lead to the notion that the Israeli lobby had a role in the expulsion.
Commenting on the influence of the Israeli lobby in Germany, a German researcher said that it is okay to insult German officials in Germany, but if Jews and Israeli officials are insulted, it is a crime and the government will deal severely with it.
In Germany, denial of the Holocaust is a crime, and the deniers are convicted and imprisoned. The German officials are so committed to the Israeli regime that they have even accepted with humiliation such an issue, which is related to their own past.
The Israeli lobby's media and political influence is so deep that it is protested by country's communities of scholars. The German government has threatened harsh punishments for those involved in protests against the Israeli regime and burning the Israeli flag. But despite opposition from the German government to anti-Israeli demonstrations, thousands took to the streets in Berlin last year to show solidarity with the Palestinians in Gaza, who were under relentless Israeli attacks. Thousands of Germans also march in support of the Palestinians on Al-Quds Day each year.
By the expulsion, the German government showed that just contrary to its claims of commitment to freedom of religious activities, it is the Israelis that practically decide about the activities of the Islamic centers in Germany.