According to reports by daily Süddeutsche Zeitung and German broadcasters WDR and NDR on Friday, the German Foreign Ministry particularly wants Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Kuwait to register any planned financial assistance for the mosques and religious centers in Germany.
The reports also said that Berlin had already involved both the domestic and foreign intelligence services to closely monitor who transfers money from abroad and who receives it in Germany in a declared attempt to improve the transparency of foreign financing of mosques and prevent the funding of extremist facilities.
According to the reports, the November remarks by Interior Minister Horst Seehofer at Germany's Islam conference that pledged to decrease “foreign influence” on Germany's mosques were in line with the new policy that has been adopted since the spring.
Seehofer at the time stressed that he would like to see German mosques become as independent as possible from foreign financing.
During the past couple of weeks, the controversial idea of introducing "mosque tax" has been floated in Germany. The proposal would allow "Islam in Germany to emancipate itself from foreign states," according to Thorsten Frei, a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU).
Additionally on Friday, German Foreign Ministry spokesman Christofer Burger said the country has been cooperating with Kuwait, in particular, regarding the new practice since last year, and that Kuwait’s government was working to “examine particularly thoroughly” the funding of projects in Germany.
He did not mention the name of any other country with which Berlin was talking, citing confidential diplomatic discussions.
According to recent reports from Germany's Joint Counter-terrorism Center (GTAZ), cited by the German news agency, Deutsche Welle, the government has been surveilling “Salafist missionary activities from the Arab Persian Gulf states" since 2015, when tens of thousands of refugees came to Germany.
According to GTAZ, countries such as Saudi Arabia have “long-term strategies” to influence radical groups of Muslims.
German intelligence also suggests that “missionary groups” from such countries were increasingly interlinked with Salafi groups in Germany and Europe.
Over four million people, or nearly six percent of the total population of Germany, are Muslims.