German teens circulate racist content on online groups

February, 2020

German teens continue to share highly violent, extremist and illegal content on online chat group platforms like WhatsApp, according to a report published Wednesday by newspapers of the Funke Mediengruppe. The German Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) pointed out the danger of teen chat groups, calling them "radical and brutal."

"Most of the time, the videos included music and commentary that they thought was funny," Markus Koths, head of the BKA's cybercrime unit told Funke Mediengruppe, as reported by Deutsche Welle.

An investigation was opened after it was discovered that members were addressing each other with "Sieg heil" and sharing Nazi symbols online, which are banned in Germany. Frequent use of the internet has become popular among many far-right groups as they spread their views and propaganda primarily through social media networks popular with young people. This also leads to various far-right extremist groups from different countries connecting through the internet to propagate their messages.

Germany is home to some 12,700 potentially violent far-right radicals, according to the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV) domestic intelligence agency. A Civey poll last year showed 60% of Germans think the government is "doing too little" to tackle the problem.

Source: DS