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Mannheim after knife attack: Police search apartment in southern Hesse

Mannheim after knife attack: Police search apartment in southern Hesse

A man attacked several people with a knife at a stand of the anti-Islam movement Pax Europa in Mannheim. Investigators are now trying to figure out why. They are following specific leads in Hesse.

One day after the knife attack at an event organized by the anti-Islam movement Pax Europa in Mannheim, investigators are trying to determine how the bloody crime came about. “What concerns us most is the question of the motive,” said the Baden-Württemberg State Criminal Police Office. The perpetrator shot by the police had undergone surgery and is currently unable to be questioned, so the search for his motives has not yet made any progress. Investigators have not yet released any information about his identity. According to consistent media reports, he is a 25-year-old from Herat in Afghanistan who lives in southern Hesse. The police officer injured in the attack is “still in grave danger of death,” said a spokesman for the State Criminal Police Office on Saturday morning.

Meanwhile, the police have searched an apartment in Heppenheim, Hesse. The State Criminal Police Office in Stuttgart did not initially confirm media reports that it was the apartment of the suspected perpetrator. An LKA spokesman simply said that the search on Friday evening was carried out in connection with investigations into Mannheim.

The perpetrator attacked participants of an anti-Islam rally on Mannheim’s market square on Friday morning and injured six people, including the police officer. According to the LKA spokesman, all of the injured except for the officer were participants in the rally. It is still unclear whether they are also members of Pax Europa.

Michael Stürzenberger “was hit in the leg and face”

According to the organization’s treasurer, Stefanie Kizina, board member Michael Stürzenberger was also injured. Kizina said the attack was aimed specifically at the 59-year-old, who was injured in the face with a knife. She explained to the “Bild” newspaper: “He was hit in the leg and face and is undergoing emergency surgery. His life is apparently not in danger.” Stürzenberger is one of the leading figures in the association.

The State Criminal Police Office says that numerous questions are still unanswered and are the subject of investigations. “What kind of knife is that? Where did it come from? Did he buy the knife?” – the answers to these questions will also help to determine whether the arrested man planned the crime or whether it was a spontaneous attack. The State Security Department of the Karlsruhe Public Prosecutor’s Office, which is responsible for political crimes, is investigating the case.

“Our thoughts are with everyone who was injured in the knife attack, and my thoughts as Interior Minister are of course especially with the injured police colleague,” Baden-Württemberg’s Interior Minister Thomas Strobl (CDU) told the “Bild” newspaper.

Mannheim: Internet video shows incident

Shortly after the attack, a video of the crime circulated on the Internet: It shows the attacker stabbing several people and bystanders shouting: “Put the knife down!” It also shows an officer shooting the attacker. Several police officers then pinned the man to the ground. According to the police, public prosecutor’s office and the State Criminal Police Office, only one shot was fired.

The crime caused horror across the country. Chancellor Olaf Scholz was also shocked. “The images from Mannheim are terrible,” he wrote on the X platform. “My thoughts are with the victims. Violence is absolutely unacceptable in our democracy. The perpetrator must be severely punished.”

Source: Stern

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