Hamburg knife attack suspect known, but not deemed risky

Jul 30, 2017, 00:32
Hamburg knife attack suspect known, but not deemed risky

Torsten Voss, head of the Hamburg branch of the domestic intelligence agency, said officials interviewed the man and came away with the impression that he was a "destabilised personality" but not someone who posed an immediate threat.

German media reported that the man had Islamist views and was known to authorities. They declined to say whether the attack was being treated as a terrorist incident.

"These criminals want to poison our free society with fear, but they will not succeed", said Scholz. But prosecutors think they were radicalised in Germany and not deployed from overseas to commit the attacks, like the jihadists behind the November 2015 Paris attacks were.

Muddy bootprints along the corridors marked the tell-tale signs of a massive police raid at an asylum seeker shelter in Hamburg, where the suspect who killed one and wounded six in a knife attack lived.

In 2016, ISIL also claimed a suicide bomb attack in the southern city of Ansbach which wounded 15 victims, and a man's axe rampage on a train in Bavaria that hurt five, before the perpetrator was shot dead by police. A 50-year-old man died of his injuries. The Berlin incident was the last - and most deadly - in a series of assaults involving refugees that shook Germany previous year in the wake of an influx of 1 million asylum seekers into the country in 2015. With no deadly attacks involving asylum seekers this year until Friday's Hamburg knifing, Merkel's Christian Democratic Union has rebounded in the polls and won three straight state votes.

Police said he acted alone and he was overpowered by passers-by.

The attacker had been scheduled to be deported, but the process had been held up as he lacked identity papers, Scholz said.

According to Telegraph UK, the man ran into a supermarket in the neighbourhood of Barmbek and started attacking customers with a knife at around 3 am local time.

German women in Cologne and Hamburg were also the targets of mass rapes, groping and molestations on New Year's Eve 2015, when more than 1,000 reports of such attacks were made in which more than 90 percent of the suspects were migrants.

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