Very good news indeed. Which countries will follow? France, perhaps? USA? Canada?
With its new anti-terrorism law adopted on July 8 in Parliament, Austria becomes the first European country to ban the Islamist brotherhood founded almost a century ago by the Egyptian Hassan al-Banna.
“Nothing is going well for the Islamist networks in Austria. The Brotherhood of the Muslim Brotherhood was already in the crosshairs of the eco-conservative government since the Vienna attack which left four dead and 23 injured on November 2, 2020. It has now been registered at the end of last week, on the 8th. last July, on the blacklist of organizations linked to “religiously motivated crime”. Its slogans and literature are banned. Their detention or propagation is now punishable by a fine of 4,000 euros and one month in prison.
Vienna was immediately accused on sites dedicated to the Muslim Brotherhood and the Turkish organization of Millî Görüs of “fueling Islamophobia” and “increasing attacks against Muslims”. Yet Austria remains the only country in Europe to grant official status to Islam . In addition, the country has long been one of the main strongholds of the Muslim Brotherhood and one of the financial hubs of political Islamism on the Old Continent.
So much so that the day after the attack, the Minister of the Interior, Karl Nehammer, promised to attack “the roots of political Islam”. In the process, the Minister of Integration, the ecologist Susanne Raab, announced the creation of a “Documentation Center on Political Islam” responsible for closely monitoring the movement of the Brothers. A new anti-terrorism law was tabled in the Federal Parliament on December 16, 2020. Chancellor Sebastian Kurz’s objective: “to affirm the will to do battle with political Islam”.
The new anti-terrorism law was adopted on July 8. It offers the authorities greater prerogatives in the field of surveillance and control of extremist circles. But its most important measure is the inclusion of the Muslim Brotherhood on the list of “extremist groups linked to religiously motivated crime”. The name of the brotherhood is thus added to those of Daesh, Al-Qaida, Hamas, Hezbollah, the Kurdish PKK, the Turkish Gray Wolves also banned in France and Germany, and the Croatian fascist movement of the Ustasha.
According to the provisions of this new anti-terrorism law, any possession or propagation of slogans or documents promoting groups on the blacklist will be punished with a fine of 4,000 euros and / or a prison sentence of 4,000 euros. ‘a month. In the event of a repeat offense, the sentences could go up to 10,000 euros fine and six months in prison.
More judicious than the simple prohibition of groups or associations, which are immediately reconstituted under new titles, this Austrian strategy known as “the prohibition of symbols” is proving to be very effective. According to the Minister of the Interior, Karl Nehammer, more than 27,000 offenses have been observed since its establishment in the aftermath of the November 2020 attacks. The fact of extending it to the Muslim Brotherhood is the hardest blow ever dealt to the brotherhood in Europe.”