The woman, identified as Beate Zschäpe, has refused to cooperate with police since turning herself in last week. In the meantime, the case has blown up, with authorities uncovering more and more details of a far-right group they are calling a domestic terrorist organization. They suspect the organization may have murdered eight Turks and one Greek between 2000 and 2006 and fatally shot a policewoman in 2007.
Thirty-six-year-old Zschäpe is suspected of founding and belonging to the National Socialist Underground group with two other men, both of whom are now dead. She is further alleged to have set fire to a house used by the group in an effort to destroy evidence.
Many Germans are asking themselves how the group, which allegedly included far-right extremists who were known to the authorities, could have succeeded in carrying out their crimes undetected for so many years.
German media reported on Sunday that Zschäpe has worked as informant for the German homeland security, which is called Bundesamt für Verfassungsschutz (BfV) or Federal Office for the Protection of Constitution. The BfV denied that claim on Monday. In the 1990's Zschäpe and the two men had attracted the police's attention because of their contacts to an East German far-right organization. They had been observed by the BfV, but in 1998 they went into hiding after guns and explosives had been found by the police. The BfV lost track of them. A BfV's spokesperson on Monday said that his institution will analyze whether it is necessary to change its approach and the organizational structure in the fight against far-right terrorists. On Tuesday representatives of German security institutions have to answer questions in the German Federal Parliament. Some politicians fear that the BfV has concentrated too much on the fight against Islamic terrorists and hence has neglected dangerous neo-Nazi movements.
Chancellor Angela Merkel vowed at a party conference in Leipzig to "do everything possible" to clarify the case, and shed light on the murders.
Authorities arrested another suspect over the weekend, a 37-year-old German suspected of having supported the group that is also believed to have carried out a series of bank robberies.
The male suspect, identified only as Holger G. in line with German privacy laws, is to be brought before a judge later on Monday. Prosecutors said the man was known to have been active in the far-right scene since the end of the 1990s and is believed to have aided the trio in the 2007 slaying of a policewoman that had remained unsolved since.
The widening case has sparked a fierce debate over the government's ability to protect the millions of immigrants who call Germany home, even as it seeks to attract more skilled workers from abroad.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry released a statement on the issue on Monday as well and said the arrest of the members of the far-right group justifies concerns of Turkey and Turks living abroad over racist and xenophobic tendencies in Europe. The statement underlined that Turkey expects the German authorities to take every measure available against these extremist tendencies and exert utmost effort to shed light on the crimes committed by such extremists.