AL-NUR MOSQUE, BERLIN
AL-Nur Mosque in Neukolln, Berlin was founded in 2001 by a Saudi and two Lebanese citizens. The purchase of the property was to 75% funded by the now banned Saudi Al-Haramain Foundation (see – Report 09.14.09). During its first years up to 1,200 Muslims came to the Friday prayers, many of whom were Palestinian Arabs.
During the first years the AL-Nur Mosque was run by the Lebanese preacher Dr. Salem Rafei, who openly supported Palestinian suicide attacks and called Muslims to kill all unbelievers and kings standing in the way of Islam. Responsible for the generous financial support was the Saudi attache’ Mohammed Jaber Fakihi, who had been sent to Berlin in 06/2000.
Mohammed Jaber Fakihi stood in close contact with Dr. Salem Rafei, but did also meet one of the members of the Hamburg Cell, Mounir el Motassadeq, in order to provide him with a forged passport to facilitate his escape from Germany. The CIA estimates that Mohammed Jaber Fakihi raised, within two years, about $800,000 USD for militant Jihadists. In 2003 a bombing plot by Ihsna Garnaoui of the AL-Nur Mosque was discovered.
In 2006, after a visit to Lebanon, Dr. Salem Rafei was denied to re-enter Germany and he was replaced by Abdel Hadime Kamouss. Three years earlier, after Ihsan Garnaoui’s arrest, Abdel Kamouss was questioned by the police and asked to testify against Ihsan Garnaoui. Abdel Kamouss found himself in a dilemma and called Dr. Hassan Dabbagh to ask for advice. The conversation was recorded by the Office for the Protection of the Constitution, the German Security service – LfV. In generally Dr. Hassan Dabbagh advised Abdel Kamouss to “forget” and by that to cover up for Ihsan Garnaoui and that what he did in court.
Through Dr. Hassan Dabbagh and Pierre Vogel, who started his preaching career in AL-Nur Mosque in 2006, the Mosque is closely connected to the ‘Einladung zum Paradies’ – EZP in Braunschweig.
The LfV of Berlin counted 350 Salafist followers living in the German capital in 2010. Out of these 350 it considers 100 to support the use of violence. As previously mentioned, a sizable number of the scene has already joined militant training camps in Pakistan.
In late 2010, several Muslim centers in Berlin, including the AL-Nur Mosque, have been the target of arson attacks. No real damage was done and no one was hurt.
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