Europe

German authorities ban Islamic extremist group

  • police guard outside the  Islamic Society of Hildesheim (DIK) mosque after a raid  in Hildesheim, Germany, Tuesday, March 14, 2017.  (Holger Hollemann/dpa via AP)

    police guard outside the Islamic Society of Hildesheim (DIK) mosque after a raid in Hildesheim, Germany, Tuesday, March 14, 2017. (Holger Hollemann/dpa via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • A cut-out window panel with a mosque printed on it is loaded into a vehicle by outside the  Islamic Society of Hildesheim (DIK) mosque after a raid  in Hildesheim, Germany, Tuesday, March 14, 2017.  (Holger Hollemann/dpa via AP)

    A cut-out window panel with a mosque printed on it is loaded into a vehicle by outside the Islamic Society of Hildesheim (DIK) mosque after a raid in Hildesheim, Germany, Tuesday, March 14, 2017. (Holger Hollemann/dpa via AP)  (The Associated Press)

  • German police block a street  outside the  Islamic Society of Hildesheim (DIK) mosque, after a raid in Hildesheim, Germany, Tuesday, March 14, 2017.  ( Holger Hollemann/dpa via AP)

    German police block a street outside the Islamic Society of Hildesheim (DIK) mosque, after a raid in Hildesheim, Germany, Tuesday, March 14, 2017. ( Holger Hollemann/dpa via AP)  (The Associated Press)

Authorities in northern Germany have banned an organization that they say was a "hot spot" for Islamic extremists and searched a mosque that the group runs.

The state interior ministry in Lower Saxony on Tuesday announced a ban on the "German-speaking Islam Group Hildesheim," known by its German acronym DIK.

The group, based in the city of Hildesheim, was long known as a center for ultraconservative Muslims known as Salafists, and the mosque had been raided last year. Apartments also were searched Tuesday.

News agency dpa quoted Interior Minister Boris Pistorius as saying: "With the ban on the group, a hot spot of the radical Salafist scene in Germany has been dismantled."

Authorities suspect that Muslims were radicalized in the organization and motivated to take part in jihad.