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Police head wants jihadists better monitored

Another 15 or so specialised police are needed to combat jihadism on the internet, the head of the Federal Police Office believes.

This content was published on June 27, 2010 - 12:25

In an interview with the German-language Sonntag newspaper on Sunday, Jean-Luc Vez says jihadists are using the web for a range of purposes, including launching calls for violence, making propaganda and recruiting new members.

He told the paper that both the intelligence service and the criminal police need more specialists.

The Police Office believes that in Switzerland there are “a few dozen persons” who really need to be “closely monitored”. Vez said that this is being done “within the limits of the available resources and the legal framework”.

This is not always easy, he pointed out. A judge has to give permission for a mosque to be monitored, but it is extremely difficult to provide the judge with the concrete indications required for this permission to be granted.

“Something needs to change here,” Vez said. He admitted that it is not known what is being preached in mosques.

He also called for a political discussion to decide how internal security can be maintained without infringing fundamental rights to an excessive degree.

He said there are no specific indications that the dangers to Switzerland have increased in the wake of the popular vote to ban the building of minarets and calls to forbid the wearing of the burka. However, there are indications that al-Qaida sympathisers are using Switzerland as a transit country or logistics base.

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