The following report from the Austrian daily Kronen Zeitung describes police actions against the Muslim Brotherhood in the wake of last week’s Islamic terror attack in Vienna. Many thanks to Gary Fouse for the translation:
Raids: Amounts in “millions” seized
It was a “decisive blow” against Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood, confirmed Interior Minister Karl Nehammer (ÖVP) on Monday, referring to the success as part of “Operation Luxor”, formerly “Operation Ramses”, in which numerous searches and seizures were carried out throughout Austria (see video). The police are fighting on two fronts, one to clear up the direct contacts of the Vienna attacker, the other to proceed against the structures in the background. 930 police participated, a good 21,000 man-hours spent in surveillance, especially on finance streams, and thus, fighting “the roots of radicalization”.
The Muslim Brotherhood is deeply dangerous, and like Hamas, a threat for democracy. Their goal is to carry out a “long-planned Islamization”, as well to undermine fundamental rights and freedom under the banner of terrorism and anti-Semitism. In addition to the formation of a terrorist-criminal organization and money laundering, there is also suspected terror finance, which must be countered.
To protect all people living in Austria
In addition, such organizations try to put pressure on Muslims living in Austria. Nehammer stresses that it is his aim “to protect all people living in Austria, especially Muslims, from these tendencies”. In any case, it is criminal acts that are the subject of investigation, not religion.
Proceedings against terror financing
The General Director of Public Security, Franz Ruf, made it clear that the organizations which are the focus of the current raids have already been proven to belong to the MB and Hamas (which is illegal in Austria.) That was achieved since the previous year by ongoing investigations with broad surveillance activities, financial investigations, and other technical measures.
Cash “in the millions seized”
Terror organizations need money, which is earned under the cover of legitimate organizations, spending, or criminal activities. Therefore, it is necessary, to uncover these complex structures and freeze the finances. In the course of the searches, for example, “large amounts of cash” — amounts in the millions — have been seized, according to Ruf.
The MB, whose facilities were raided early Monday, is not officially in Austria. Nevertheless, the Islamist movement has networked with other associations, warned a controversial study by George Washington University three years ago. As of Monday, the Islamic Faith Community in Austria was initially unaware of any searches in facilities under their control.