European leaders meet to set up “rigorous measures for a rapid and coordinated response to terrorism”. Austria targets the Muslim Brotherhood while Spain starts the trial against the Barcelona attackers.
French President Emmanuel Macron and Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz hosted a meeting in Paris, which was joined digitally by German Chancellor Angela Merkel, the Netherlands' Prime Minister Mark Rutte, EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and EU Council President Charles Michel, to address the threat of terrorism in Europe.
On online briefing after the meeting, Macron explained that “our priority is to put into place complete and rigorous measures, such as the development of common databases, the exchange of information or the strengthening of criminal policies”.
The French Prime Minister called for “a rapid and coordinated response to terror attacks”, because “every security lapse at the external borders or in a member state is a security risk for all member states”.
The leaders also discussed “the need for a determined fight against terrorist propaganda and hate speech on the internet”.
Furthermore, in order “to fight the ideology of hatred”, Charles Michel earlier stressed on Twitter the need “to set up as soon as possible a European institute to train imams in Europe”.
“Online messages glorifying terrorism must be quickly removed. There must be no impunity for terrorists and those praising them on internet”, he added.
To fight the Ideology of Hatred, we need to setup as soon as possible a European Institute to train imams in Europe.
Online messages glorifying terrorism must be quickly removed. There must be no impunity for terrorists and those praising them on internet. pic.twitter.com/O6E1dn13Um
— Charles Michel (@eucopresident) November 9, 2020
He also confirmed that Interior ministers from EU member nations are scheduled to meet Friday about how to accelerate and improve anti-terrorism work in progress.
The meeting came after the Islamic terrorist attacks that recently took place in France and Austria.
One week after Vienna attack, Austrian police has raided more than 60 premises, targeting dozens of people with suspected ties to terrorist and criminal organizations, although “the operation has no connection with the recent deadly attack”, the authorities said.
As a result of a year-long terrorism probe, Austria has charged the Muslim Brotherhood with trying to “set up an Islamic state on the basis of Islamic law in all countries on Earth and for maintaining ties to terrorist organizations such as Hamas”.
Meanwhile, the trial of three men who have been accused of helping in the jihadist attacks that killed 16 people and injured 140 in Barcelona in 2017, has started this week.
[photo_footer] The three suspected men on trial in Spain for the Barcelona 2017 jihadist attacks. / TV3
One of them is accused of collaborating with the jihadist cell and lending them his van, while the other two face charges of belonging to a terrorist organisation, manufacturing and storing explosives, and attempting to cause widespread destruction. Prosecutors are seeking jail terms of 8, 41 and 36 years respectively.