German media is reporting that a local head of DITIB has been indicted for incitement. According to the NDR report:
June 30, 2021, The Göttingen public prosecutor’s office has brought charges against the former DITIB chairman Mustafa Keskin. It accuses the ex-functionary of the mosque association of incitement of the masses on four counts. In addition, Keskin endorsed a criminal act in one case, an authority spokesman announced. He is alleged to have spread at least four messages on Facebook and WhatsApp in the period between May 2015 and February 2021, in which Jews and Armenians are insulted and conspiracy myths are spread. The socialist youth association “Die Falken” had discovered the hate messages at the beginning of the year and made them public. As a result, Keskin resigned from his post on February 8. The former DITIB chairman denies having sent anti-Semitic messages. In his former office, he said, he was committed to interreligious dialogue. Among other things, Keskin was involved in the Round Table of the Abrahamic Religions in Göttingen. The federal DITIB association announced in March that it would investigate the anti-Semitism allegations against him. [Translated by DeepL with edits]
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The GIOR reported on the case in March, with examples of Keskin’s anti-Semitic content described as follows:
Keskin is said to have referred to Israeli soldiers as “Jewish dogs,” for example. Some of his posts suggested that Jews and Israelis were deliberately killing children. He also allegedly used the identifying symbol of the Islamist Muslim Brotherhood on several occasions. In his WhatsApp profile, the ex-Ditib executive had used a picture depicting Donald Trump and Joe Biden as puppets of investment banker Jacob Rothschild. In anti-Semitic conspiracy myths, the Rothschild family serves as a placeholder for “the Jews,” who are supposed to control financial markets and governments.
The Turkish-Islamic Union for Religious Affairs, also known as DITIB, manages over 900 mosques in Germany. The Turkish Directorate of Religious Affairs (Diyanet) determines the theological guidelines for the imams’ sermons, and the Turkish consulate pays their salaries. As GIOR reported in March, DITIB distanced itself from Keskin following the revelation of his statements. Other GIOR reporting on DITIB has included:
- In July, we reported that DITIB chose not to participate in creating an imam training center financed by the German state.
- In July, we reported that the chairman of another DITIB branch has said that the group only canceled an event featuring a Turkish historian known for homophobic and anti-Semitic conspiracy theories because of outside pressure.
- In May, we reported that DTIB would remain part of an Islamic education advisory board in the German state of North-Rhine Westphalia.