ISIS on the Assembly Line: Volkswagen Ordered to Rehire Suspected Militant Who Threatened Co-workers
In 2016, Volkswagen’s Wolfsburg factory fired an employee named Samir B. He had been working for the automaker for 8 years, mounting tires, but after the company said he began threatening co-workers and telling them of his pledge to join Islamist ISIS fighters in Syria, they had to let him go.
VW felt the threats were serious and worried he might stage a terror attack during a stockholders’ meeting at the company’s Wolfsburg headquarters. Now, a German court has ordered Volkswagen to reinstate him.
On the face of things, it seems VW had ample reason to be concerned about Samir B. In 2014, two of his known associates travelled to Syria to join ISIS, where they were later killed fighting to establish an Islamic caliphate, the Daily Mail reports. In December of that same year, Samir B. was stopped before boarding a flight for Istanbul, Turkey at the Hanover airport. He was carrying 9,350 Euros (roughly $11,500 USD) in cash and a drone. German authorities wouldn’t let him board the plane and confiscated his passport.
After threatening his co-workers at VW, saying they would “all die,” the company fired him. He sued for unlawful dismissal at the Hanover State Employment Court. In the company’s defense, VW’s attorneys told the court that it was proven that Samir B. “was involved in the recruitment and support of Islamic fighters from Wolfsburg,” giving the company no choice but to terminate him.
To avoid a judgment forcing them to put their employees at risk, VW offered a 65,000 Euro cash settlement, but Samir B.’s lawyers declined, according to Bild. While the court accepted Volkswagen’s contention that Samir B. had tried to join ISIS and threatened his co-workers, the judge ruled that VW had not proven that the “operational peace” of the factory had been “specifically disturbed.”
Volkswagen has a month to rehire him, but it’s likely the automaker will instead appeal the case to a higher court.
Ra_pro on Mar 19, 2018
Isn't this just a basic question of free speech? Just because you have "wrong" beliefs doesn't make you a menace. If he was such a menace to society why didn't the German police arrest him and instead just confiscated his passport? I think the answer is clear there, was not enough evidence to hold him on a real charge. You have to be a true nutcase to believe that after numerous ISIS attacks in Germany the police and Germany in general are just not serious about Muslim extremism. The judge took this a step further and said that the company hasn't proved the he was disturbing the peace at the workplace because saying that you support ISIS is a political stand and it shouldn't be caused of someone's firing as odious as that sounds. If Germany had a law like UK where joining ISIS is a crime (he attempted to join ISIS) he would be probably be sitting in jail right now instead of working at VW. We will not preserve our life-style by rounding up all the people we disagree with but apparently the US populace seems to be convinced that that's the solution. Germans have learnt their lesson, Americans have to still learn it on their own skin and that's where the country is going.
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