The Christian Democrats were already calling for tougher security measures even before Sunday’s arrest of a man reportedly planning to bomb an airport in Berlin.
At the weekend, police raided a home in Chemnitz and found explosive materials. Apparently there is also evidence that the suspect, Jabr Al-Bakr, had been searching online for information on how to build a bomb. The security forces believe he had contact with IS and was planning a large explosion.
The governing CDU party now believes even stronger measures are needed to protect Germany from a terror attack.
Armin Schuster, the chairman of the Bundestag’s internal affairs committee and a CDU member, said his party now wants to extend data surveillance. At present, citizens’ phone and internet records of citizens may be legally stored for ten weeks. This material should be stored for up to six months, Mr. Schuster told Handelsblatt.
Evidence suggested that Jabr Al-Bakr had had contact with IS. Mr. Schuster said in this case, as with other terror suspects, holding such data would help investigators find out whether they had contact with commanders, supporters or sympathizers.
In Germany, data protection and privacy are fiercely protected.
But according to Mr. Schuster, holding onto telecommunications data would help security authorities reveal and understand terror threats.