The German government has announced that it is to engage in “talks with the Islamic community” over growing concern in Berlin that the “angry children of immigrants may turn to terrorism because they are excluded from German prosperity.”
A government briefing document released in Berlin spoke of the "growing difficulties that second and third generation immigrants have finding a place in school and the jobs market."
Germany has already been slammed by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) over the low educational performance of immigrant children in schools. Many leave school without any qualifications.
Recent news reports have highlighted the low success rate for young people with Turkish or Middle Eastern names when they apply by letter for jobs or scarce apprenticeships.
The German Islam Conference was set up seven months ago by Interior Minister Wolfgang Schaeuble, who is not only responsible for religious issues but also Germany's fight against terrorism. German officials have been shocked by the emergence of terrorism among young British Muslims with roots in Pakistan and India, and worry that Germany faces a similar risk.
Government figures show there are up to 3.4 million people of Islamic heritage among Germany's 82-million population. More than half, or 1.8 million, are Turkish nationals. Aliens data show other large groups include 160,000 Bosnians, 70,000 Moroccans, 60,000 Iranians and 55,000 Afghans. About 1 million German nationals are Muslim.
Muslims settled in Germany in large numbers in the 1960s, when Germany recruited factory labor from Turkey. The Interior Ministry says 90 per cent of German Muslims are of non-Arab origin. State estimates indicate there are 2,500 mosques in Germany, many of them little more than large rented rooms in office buildings or former factories.
The government says it is seeking a trade-off, where Germany changes some laws to accommodate Muslims while the Islamic community commits itself to German democracy.