European response to Muslim Brotherhood Islamist extremism

Addressing the threat of radical Islamism is one of the main challenges to the internal agenda of European states
The flags of the Muslim Brothers during a demonstration in Jordan

PHOTO/AFP  -   The flags of the Muslim Brothers during a demonstration in Jordan

Despite the fact that in recent months the main concern for countries has been to control, and at best, defeat the COVID-19 pandemic, the major concerns that dominated the political debate in Europe are still there.

Terrorism, and especially radical Islamist terrorism, is one of the challenges that states face. Country after country is moving to address the particular security challenges posed by these radical groups. The most pressing concerns surround the Muslim Brotherhood.

In mid-July, the French government relaunched its state of the nation agenda around the fight against Islamism. It has promised legislation to target activity directed against the French state by members and supporters of this organisation. The French Senate presented 44 proposals to combat the threat of the Muslim Brotherhood. It called for a ban on the organization on French territory and urged senators to force associations of a religious nature to be transparent in their appeals.

The Austrian government has also launched a series of measures, such as the creation of an observatory that has been charged with monitoring Islamist activities within the public sphere. The launch of the Political Islam Documentation Centre is aimed at getting to know the movements in mosques and social networks of the Muslim Brotherhood and other organisations with the same ideological line.

The role is to analyze the tendencies of extremists, especially the Brotherhood, and to document the crimes of the organization.

Germany has also discussed a draft resolution that provides for strong monitoring of the members of the terrorist organization in the country. According to the draft resolution submitted by Alternativa para Alemania, the main opposition party and a proponent of radical right-wing politics, "the Brotherhood is the brains behind the Islamist network that is spreading through Germany.

These positions to fight the organisation have also reached the European Parliament, where a couple of MEPs, members of the European People's Party, made a proposal in April to tackle extremist currents.

The proposal awaits the establishment of the European Centre for Islam and Democracy to provide support for Muslims who support European values and are far from fundamentalist and extremist currents.

The European Commission did not approve this proposal and justified it by saying that "the tasks and objectives of the centre are already covered by the current legislation and activities of the bloc, with the Rights, Equality and Citizenship programme and the Rights programme".