More than 180 police officers in Germany raided homes in three provinces on Tuesday after the government banned a far-right group.
According to Interior Minister Horst Seehofer, authorities raided the homes of 11 members of Wolfsbrigade 44, a group reportedly seeking to restore the Nazi dictatorship and abolish democracy. Funds for the group were confiscated during the raid, as well as propaganda, reports The Associated Press.
“Whoever fights against the fundamental values of our free society will feel the decisive reaction of our government,” Seehofer said. “There is no place in this country for an association that sows hatred and works for the resurrection of a Nazi state.”
Police reportedly found knives, machetes, crossbows and bayonets during the search, along with Nazi-related items such as swastikas and flags.
The group was founded in 2016, the AP reported, and became known for its anti-Semitic, racist ideology and its violent public and online appearances. “44” in his name comes from the fourth letter in the alphabet, D, and means Division Dirlewanger. Oscar Dirlevanger was the commander of a Nazi SS unit and a notorious war criminal.
The German government banned other far-right groups, including Combat 18 and Nordadler, earlier this year, the AP reported, citing the German news agency dpa.
In October, a German right-wing extremist tried to break into a synagogue in the city of Halle during Yom Kippur.
The suspect, identified only as Stefan B., killed two passers-by after failing to enter. The incident shook Germany, and in response, its government pledged $ 26 million to improve the security of synagogues and other Jewish sites.