German prosecutors press charges against returning jihadists

Germany’s Federal Prosecutor is reportedly pushing for a harder line against jihadists returning from Syria and Iraq. They argue that charges of supporting a terrorist group don’t go far enough.

Since organizations such as “Islamic State” (“IS”) and Al-Nusra Front have committed crimes against humanity, prosecutors have been pursuing murder charges with increasing frequency.

The legal strategy, which the Munich-based daily “Süddeutsche Zeitung” reported this week, aims to deter Germans from traveling to Syria, where a number of terrorist organizations have joined a civilian battle against President Bashar al-Assad and his military. The power vacuum created by this conflict allowed Islamic State fighters to claim their own territory, which now stretches into Iraq.

According to the report, several departments of the Federal Prosecutor’s office have taken on roughly 135 of these cases, or nearly triple the number in 2014. That number is expected to rise further this year.