Extremist inmates ‘huge problem’ for Denmark

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From the Danish edition of The Local

In the ten weeks that followed February’s twin fatal shootings in Copenhagen, the number of warnings about potentially radicalized prison inmates exploded.

The gunman who killed two people during the February 14-15 shootings at a Copenhagen cultural centre and synagogue is believed to have been radicalized while in prison and authorities now seem to be taking the threat more seriously. 

 

Metroxpress reported on Monday that in the ten weeks that followed Omar El-Hussein’s attack, the Danish Prison and Probation Service (Kriminalforsorgen) gave 59 reports warning the Danish Security and Intelligence Service (PET) that 50 individual inmates are suspected of having radical beliefs. 

 

The association for uniformed prison personnel, Fængselsforbundet, told Metroxpress that there has been a change in approach since the February attack. “Today we would rather report one prisoner too many than one too few. It could be prisoners who begin talking about going to Syria or who decorate their cells with terror propaganda,” the association’s chairman, Kim Østerbye, told Metroxpress. “We have also begun exit programmes for radicalized prisoners in the same way that we do for gang members,” he added. 
 
Metroxpress’s report is built upon a memo from the Justice Ministry. According to the same memo, 30 of the inmates previously reported to PET have been released. 

 

Naser Khader, a spokesman for the Conservatives, told Metroxpress that Denmark clearly has “a huge problem with prisoners who are radicalized in prison. . . We should do what they do in the Netherlands, where they move the most hard-core Islamists away from the other Muslims so they can’t inspire them,”  
 
Martin Henriksen, a spokesman for the Danish People’s Party, called for immediate action. “There apparently has to be another terror attack before this is taken seriously,” he told Metroxpress. 

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