He listed Islamic terror as one of the main threats to Germany
Joachim Gauck, who confirmed he will not be seeking a second term, used one his final speeches as president to warn of several threats to Germany.
The 77-year-old, who is said to be taking it easier due to his age, listed Islamic terror as one of the main threats to Germany and Europe’s security, and warned that European cohesion has waned considerably.
He said: “The liberal democracy and the political and normative project of the West are under attack.”
Germany was rocked by numerous terror attacks throughout 2016, including a massacre at a Christmas market in Berlin, a shooting in Munich, an explosion in Ansbach and an axe attack on a train in Wuerzburg among others.
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The liberal democracy and the political and normative project of the West are under attack
He called on the continent to do more to shore up it defences, after other European countries were also the victim of terror attacks.
The majority, including massacres in Nice, Brussels, and the shocking murder of a priest in Normandy, are said to have been committed or inspired by the barbaric Islamic State (ISIS).
Critics have claimed the migrant crisis which gripped the continent last year and in 2015 allowed jihadis to cross into Europe without a stringent vetting procedure in place.
He called on the continent to do more to shore up it defences
Germany saw close to a million migrants settle in the country after Chancellor Angela Merkel championed an 'open-door' policy, much to the anger of German politicians inside and outside her party, global leaders and the electorate.
Addressing those concerns, Mr Guack said future crises would continually occur “without a regulated European immigration policy and ultimately without improving the life situation in countries of origin, crises will also be expected in the future."
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But he maintained that “origin doesn’t count, attitude does”.
Mr Gauck referred to the “internal” strife Germany faces, saying: "We need closer international cooperation and more effective internal security.
Germany saw close to a million migrants settle in the country
“We need to do more to stabilise the European Union and to counter the internal and external attempts to divide it.”
And he called on the security of Europe’s borders to be upgraded, saying the bloc needed “efficient safeguarding of European external borders.”
He noted the rise of populist parties across the continent, from the Front National to the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, which has seen its popularity soar in recent years.
Founded in 2013, the AfD party stands on an anti-euro, anti-migrant and anti-Merkel platform.
Their meteoric rise culminated in a stellar performance in last year’s regional elections, which also saw Mrs Merkel’s ruling Christian democratic Union (CDU) receive a drubbing in certain states.
AfD, led by Frauke Petry, is widely expected to do well in Germany’s national elections
AfD, led by Frauke Petry, is widely expected to do well in Germany’s national election, scheduled for September.
Mr Gauck said: “The constitutional state loses itself when it proves too weak or even helpless in the fight against violence and terror.
"We have to do more to maintain order with others, to prevent conflicts, to defuse crises and deter opponents.”
The president also listed wars in the Middle East, Russian aggression and occupation of Crimea, the challenges to NATO in the wake of Donald Trump’s election as some other key challenges facing Germany.