German prosecutors said they had arrested yesterday a suspected accomplice to a neo-Nazi killing cell thought to be behind the murders of 10 people, mainly Turkish shopkeepers.
Police detained the 36-year-old German man, identified only as Ralf W., early yesterday morning. “The accused is strongly suspected to be an accessory in six counts of murder and one attempted murder,” federal prosecutors said.Prosecutors also suspect the man, who has been active in far-right circles in the eastern state of Thuringia since 1995, gave financial assistance to the extremist cell and procured weapons for its members in 2001 or 2002. The arrest brought to four the number of people detained over the activities of the extremist “National Socialist Underground” (NSU), whose discovery earlier this month shocked the nation. Prosecutors have said the “Nationalist Socialist Underground” cell was “motivated by xenophobic and subversive thinking” and that its goal was to kill citizens, mainly those with foreign roots, and carry out bombing attacks.
The case has sparked allegations that the country may have turned a blind eye to the threat posed by right-wing extremism, despite Germany’s deep-seated shame over its Nazi past. The case has dominated German headlines for weeks. Chancellor Angela Merkel has vowed to intensify the fight against the far-right.
Compiled from AFP and Reuters stories by the Daily News staff.