Berlin police probe spate of anti-Islam arson attacks
Berlin police said they set up a special investigation unit and hotline on Thursday after an arson attack on an Islamic centre, one of a rash of similar incidents in the German capital since June.
The latest incident saw a Molotov cocktail thrown against the wall of an Iranian Islamic cultural centre in the early hours of Thursday morning, sending up tall flames.
Two people were inside the building near Tempelhof airport at the time but neither was hurt. The flames died down on their own but damaged the wall, police said in a statement.
A nearby mosque has suffered four similar incidents since June, while another in the Neukoelln district, home to a large Turkish and Arab community, has also been targeted. No one was hurt but there was damage.
Police said that a piece of evidence -- a spokesman declined to elaborate -- lead them to believe that there have been more than 10 such incidents in Berlin this year, many of which have not been reported to them.
"Members of mosques or possible witnesses are urgently called upon to inform the police of any cases that have not been reported because of there being little or no damage," police said.
© 2010 AFP