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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
07FRANKFURT531
2007-02-05 15:31:00
UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY
Consulate Frankfurt
Cable title:  

Naturalized Islamic Fundamentalists: Hesse Court Reverses

Tags:   PHUM  SCUL  KISL  GM 
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VZCZCXRO8149
RR RUEHAG RUEHDF RUEHLZ
DE RUEHFT #0531 0361531
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 051531Z FEB 07
FM AMCONSUL FRANKFURT
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 9371
INFO RUCNFRG/FRG COLLECTIVE
						UNCLAS FRANKFURT 000531 

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR EUR/AGS

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PHUM SCUL KISL GM
SUBJECT: Naturalized Islamic Fundamentalists: Hesse Court Reverses
Verdict against Milli Goerus Members

Sensitive but unclassified; not for internet distribution.

UNCLAS FRANKFURT 000531

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR EUR/AGS

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PHUM SCUL KISL GM
SUBJECT: Naturalized Islamic Fundamentalists: Hesse Court Reverses
Verdict against Milli Goerus Members

Sensitive but unclassified; not for internet distribution.


1. (U) SUMMARY: On January 18, the Hesse Administrative Court in
Kassel ruled in favor of four naturalized Germans of Turkish origin
after the state stripped their citizenship for not having reported
being members in the fundamentalist Islamic group Milli Goerus
(IGMG). Striking down an earlier finding that the men should have
revealed their IGMG membership during the naturalization process
(due to its alleged anti-constitutional tenets), the state court
ruled that the four were not necessarily committing fraud. Hesse
state authorities denounced the verdict -- the latest roadblock to
deporting hardliners -- as an "invitation" to fraudulent
naturalization. END SUMMARY.


2. (U) As in other German states, the Hesse Office for the
Protection of the Constitution has monitored Milli Goerus/IGMG
activities since the 1990s. Hesse authorities argue that, while the
IGMG officially endorses co-existence and integration, in practice
it supports the creation of an authoritarian Islamic theocracy (for
instance, preaching a subservient role for women).

Court: Cannot Assume Citizens Know a Group is Hardline
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


3. (U) Under Germany's constitution, revoking German citizenship is
only possible if the person does not end up stateless (which would
have been the case here), except where citizenship is obtained via
"malicious fraud." The court held that the four men (all of whom
had served as board members in local IGMG bodies) did not commit
such fraud. Even if Milli Goerus is anti-constitutional -- the
court left the question open -- the state could not expect
naturalization applicants to make such an assessment of IGMG (or
other organizations) without asking them specifically.

Reaction of Hesse Authorities
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


4. (SBU) The Hesse Ministry of Interior responded with "shock" at
the verdict and called it naive to assume that the four men -- local
leaders within Milli Goerus -- did not know about state monitoring
of the organization. Hesse Interior Minister Volker Bouffier
(CDU/Christian Democrats) called the verdict practically an
invitation to obtain German citizenship via fraud. Since the judges
have ruled out an appeal at the state level, the ministry can only
raise the issue at the Federal Administrative Court in Leipzig. A
MinInt contact told us they have not yet received the Kassel court's
official verdict and detailed justification, the basis upon which
the Ministry will decide its next steps.

COMMENT: The Difficulty of Deporting Hardliners
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -


5. (SBU) In Germany, states hold most of the cards in policy towards
Muslim immigrants -- whether housing, education, naturalization, or
public security. This case, along with a recent series of
deportations of alleged extremists, represents the cutting edge of
state efforts to exclude fundamentalists while embracing
"mainstream" Muslims -- efforts that frequently run into the wall of
extensive legal protections for the accused. The case also points
out conflicting views of Milli Goerus as either an authentic
representative of devout Muslims (it participates indirectly in the
federal government's "Integration Dialogue") or a threat to the
German constitutional order (the view of conservative German states
such as Hesse).


6. (U) This cable was coordinated with Embassy Berlin.

POWELL