German media is reporting about a trial in Hamburg which involves an employee of the Islamic Centre Hamburg, an influential mosque closely linked to the Islamic Republic of Iran. According to a Welt article:
March 3, 2021 The defendant D., 56 years old, father of a family, four daughters, says he works as an interpreter and translator in the blue mosque on the Alster. Witness Z is sitting a few meters away in the courtroom. […] “I wanted to protest, show the world what Iran is doing to us,” he says. […] In front of the fence, he started denouncing the Iranian support for the terrorist organization Hezbollah and set fire to a picture of Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. He also railed against the “terror mosque”. “I was loud so that all the neighbors could hear me.” As a result, a man from the mosque rushed towards him, a stone in hand, and attacked him. [Translated with Google Translate]
Read the rest here.
The article goes on to describe the Islamic Centre Hamburg (IZH) as the most important mosque in Germany linked to Iran and reports that it has been monitored by Germany’s internal intelligence agency for 26 years:
The Islamic Centre Hamburg (IZH) is the bearer of the Imam Ali mosque, in front of whose fence the fight took place. The IZH has been mentioned in the annual report of the Hamburg Office for the Protection of the Constitution for 26 years. It is not a normal mosque on the Outer Alster, but, according to the constitution protection report, “Iranian Islamists”. “The IZH has established a nationwide network of contacts and exercises influence on Shiites as well as Shiite-Islamic mosques and associations, up to and including complete control.” Oppositionists repeatedly report on intimidation and repression abroad, too, and Tehran’s long arm reaches them here too. According to the constitution protection report, the head of the IZH, Mohammad Hadi Mofatteh, is considered to be the representative of the revolutionary leader Ali Khamenei in Europe. In an interview with this newspaper last year, Mofatteh denied the allegation that his institution acted as a representative of the Iranian regime in Europe. At the same time, Mofatteh confirmed that he was in personal contact with Supreme Leader Khamenei. [Translated with Google Translate]
The article also notes that the IZH is part of Hamburg’s Shura Council, a partner of the city which grants privileges such as the provision of Islamic religious instruction.
Past Global Influence Operations Report (GIOR) coverage of Western organizations and individuals tied to Iran has included:
- In March, we reported about an Iranian-tied British NGO which called on the UK’s Education Secretary to retract his condemnation of the Batley school protests.
- In March, we reported about a new global pro-Iranian lobby group that features European and US representatives.
- In January, we reported that the US Justice Department charged a Massachusetts man with acting and conspiring to act as an unregistered agent of Iran.