While monitoring known and presumed far-right extremists, Germany’s BfV domestic intelligence agency has discovered that 1,203 of them were licensed to possess firearms. According to December 2019 data released by the Interior Ministry, 528 license-holders were the so-called Reichsbürger — members of a right-wing organization which rejects Germany’s democratic order. Furthermore, 17 cases of single or multiple-series shooting practices attended by far-right extremists between early 2019 and late 2020 had “become known” to the BfV, three-quarters of them taking place in other parts of Europe. Shooting range usage was in itself is “not a criminal offense,” the ministry added, citing Germany’s federal police. Replying to a set of questions in parliament submitted by the opposition Left party, the ministry said a conclusive BfV count of rightist extremists with gun licenses in 2019 was not yet available. ‘Growing threat posed by neo-Nazis and racists’ During gun law debate in the Bundestag parliament in December 2019, the Left’s interiors affairs specialist Martina Renner gave an estimate that over 700 “neo-Nazis” still had weapons. Speaking in the Bundestag in December 2019, Martina Renner urged changes to Germany’s gun laws In a special report last September, the BfV agency estimated that 13,000 violence-prone right-wing extremists were living in Germany. The agency also cited a “pronounced affinity” for weapons among the… Read full this story
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