BERLIN (AP) — German police have arrested seven men on suspicion of forming a “far-right terrorist organization” in the eastern city of Chemnitz and planning to carry out attacks against foreigners and political enemies, officials said Monday.
Six of the men, all German citizens aged between 20 and 30, were arrested Monday by tactical police units in Saxony, the state in which Chemnitz is located, and Bavaria, federal prosecutors said in a statement.
The men are alleged to have formed a group calling itself “Revolution Chemnitz,” together with a seventh suspect who was arrested in a separate case last month. The seventh man, identified only as 31 year-old German citizen Christian K. for privacy reasons, is alleged to have been the group’s leader.
Prosecutors said the men wanted to “carry out violent and armed attacks against foreigners and political enemies” as part of a plan to overthrow Germany’s democratic order.
Five of the men — Christian K. and four others identified only as Sten E., Martin H., Marcel W. and Sven W. — allegedly attacked several foreigners in the center of Chemnitz on September 14, armed with bottles, weighted “sap” gloves and an electric stun device. Prosecutors said the attack was a “test run” for another attack the men planned for October 3, Germany’s national unity day.
Prosecutors didn’t specify whether the group was linked to anti-foreigner violence that erupted after a German man was killed in Chemnitz in August. A 23-year-old Syrian is being held on suspicion of manslaughter in that case. An Iraqi man is also being sought over the killing.
A kosher restaurant was also attacked on the sidelines of one protest, with masked men throwing stones and bottles and yelling “Jewish pig, get out of Germany.”