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Knife attack in Mannheim: Police officer succumbs to his injuries

Knife attack in Mannheim: Police officer succumbs to his injuries

The police officer who was seriously injured in the knife attack on Mannheim’s market square is dead. The 29-year-old had tried to overpower the attacker together with colleagues.

The police officer who was attacked in the knife attack on Mannheim’s market square has died of his injuries. This was announced by the Karlsruhe public prosecutor’s office, the Mannheim police headquarters and the State Criminal Police Office on Sunday evening. The attacker stabbed the 29-year-old officer several times in the head area. “He was operated on immediately after the attack and placed in an artificial coma, but succumbed to his serious injuries in the late afternoon hours of June 2nd,” the authorities announced. “We mourn the loss of a police officer who gave his life for our safety.”

The motive of the 25-year-old perpetrator is still unclear. The man, who was born in Afghanistan but came to Germany as a teenager in 2014, has not yet been able to be questioned – he was also injured in the minutes after the attack. He has not yet come to the attention of the police; he is married, has two children and lives in Heppenheim, Hesse. In the attack, the man injured six men, including the police officer, on Friday morning at an event organized by the anti-Islam movement Pax Europa (BPE) on the market square in the city center. Among those injured is BPE board member Michael Stürzenberger.

Police forces are deployed at an incident on Mannheim's market square

Reporter reports on knife attack: Police shot suspect “incapacitated”

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Winfried Kretschmann is “shocked to the core”

“The news has shocked me to the core,” said Prime Minister Winfried Kretschmann in the evening. His thoughts are with the family, relatives and colleagues, said the Green politician. “This terrible act painfully reminds us all of the often incalculable risks that police officers are exposed to every day.” The service that police officers provide to the state, the community and the free democratic basic order cannot be valued highly enough. “As a society, we owe them the utmost respect and appreciation.”

“These are moments when the world seems to stand still,” explained Interior Minister Thomas Strobl (CDU). “The entire Baden-Württemberg police force will always and forever honor his memory.” The police officer was the victim of a brutal, bestial attack. “He gave his life because he stood up for protecting other people.”

“This young police officer had his whole life ahead of him,” said CDU state leader Manuel Hagel. “Nothing can ever heal this painful loss.” The entire country owes the young officer a deep debt of gratitude for his heroism.

Police union reacts with concern and anger

The German Police Union reacted with shock, but also anger. “The violence we encounter every day is ruthlessly brutal, inhumane and often deadly,” said regional head Ralf Kusterer. Campaigns against hate and incitement often do not even begin to address the problems that police officers have to endure every day. “Discussions about democracy and freedom of opinion do not reach perpetrators who are incapable of committing a crime or who are not guilty, nor religious fanatics whose world of thought seems completely alien and absurd to us.”

In light of the knife attack, a cross-party alliance called for a vigil against violence and hatred in Mannheim on Sunday afternoon. At the same time, a rally by the Young Alternative took place on the market square. The meeting of the AfD youth organization was held under the motto “Remigration would have prevented this act!” Videos on the Internet show how demonstrators form a long human chain in the city center – and how the police clash with a group of Antifa activists. They waved red flags and lit flares. The slogan “Nazis out” was chanted on the market square.

According to BPE treasurer Stefanie Kizina, the attack was aimed specifically at 59-year-old Munich resident Stürzenberger. He has been an active critic of Islam for years and is being monitored by the Bavarian Office for the Protection of the Constitution. Stürzenberger has since given a right-wing conservative media a video interview from his hospital bed – he had been stabbed to the face and thigh, among other things. Police officers provided first aid, he said. Stürzenberger told “Bild” that the attack was an “absolute nightmare” and that it came out of nowhere.

Chancellor Scholz announces tough action against violence

Even after the knife attack in Mannheim, the BPE wants to appear publicly at further events. Kizina assumes that the police will “tighten security measures”.

In view of the knife attack and an assault on the CDU politician Roderich Kiesewetter, Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced a tough approach to violence. “Whether it is violence against democratic politicians who are active on the left, in the centre or on the right – it is always unacceptable and we will not tolerate it,” the SPD politician stressed on Sunday at the East German Economic Forum in Bad Saarow in Brandenburg. “We will take action against all those who try to restrict democratic space with violence,” he announced. This applies regardless of whether there is a left-wing extremist, right-wing extremist or Islamist motive.

Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD) and State Interior Minister Strobl also called for tough action against people who glorify the perpetrator’s attack online. “Glorifying the murderous knife attack is disgusting and inhumane. Anyone who does this must be prosecuted with the full force of the criminal law. Our security authorities are consistently pursuing this,” Faeser told “Bild am Sonntag”. Strobl told the newspaper: “Here, crimes – especially murder – are punished with the full force of the law and not celebrated.”

Source: Stern

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