Wednesday

23rd Oct 2019

Munich attack might not have been terrorism

  • Nine people were killed in a fast-food restaurant at Munich's biggest shopping centre (Photo: Reuters)

Nine people were killed and 21 injured on Friday evening (22 July) when a man shot at customers in a fast-food restaurant in Munich, Germany, in what authorities said might not have been a terrorist attack.

The killer, an 18-year old German-Iranian man who lived with his parents, was found dead about one kilometre away from the scene of the attack after apparently having committed suicide.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

The shooting took place at around 6PM at the Olympia shopping arcade, Bavaria's largest, near the Olympic stadium outside the city centre.

"The motive, and the background of the crime are still totally unclear. The investigators are working full tilt and will continue into the night," Munich police chief Hubertus Andra told journalists late on Friday.

The shooting prompted panic in Bavaria's main city. First reports said there had been three attackers, with automatic rifles, indicating a coordinated, Paris-type terrorist assault.

Some 2,300 security forces were deployed to secure the city.

Public transport and Munich's train station were closed until Saturday morning and at one point during the evening. Police also asked drivers to leave the motorways.

At the time the police said there was an "acute terror threat". But at his later press conference, police chief Andra said authorities were now talking about "a shooting" and that the investigation should help to shed light on the killer's motives.

A video released by German media showed the killer speaking to a man on a balcony. He said he was German and that he had had hospital treatment.

German president Joachim Gauck said he was "horrified by the murderous attack".

Chancellor Angela Merkel, who had just started her holidays, did not speak to media, but will chair a security council in Berlin on Saturday. Interior minister Thomas de Maiziere came back from the US.

The shooting took place four days after another attack in Bavaria, on Monday, when a 17-year old Afghan or Pakistani minor injured five people in a train with an axe and a knife before being shot dead by police.

He had left a letter and a video on YouTube which De Maiziere said was a "classical farewell video" of a suicide attacker from the Islamic State jihadist group (IS).

The video however did not contain "any indications” as to whether he had on an IS order or had merely claimed to act on behalf of IS, the minister added.

Germany reels after multiple killings

Support for Germany's chancellor Angela Merkel remains high, but the weekend's multiple attacks against civilians have left German society in shock.

Belgium's EU nominee still embroiled in legal feud

Cache of 18 secret documents and allegations of death threats in fresh legal complaint surrounding Belgium's EU nominee, Didier Reynders, shortly after a low-level prosecutor cleared his name.

News in Brief

  1. MEPs criticise Juncker over climate and tax policies
  2. Juncker defends commission record on Greek crisis
  3. Croatian MEP criticises EU parliament for trusting Šuica
  4. Brexit is waste of time and energy, says Juncker
  5. Abortion and same-sex marriage become legal in Northern Ireland
  6. Germany wants internationally controlled zone in Syria
  7. EU parliament refuses to debate Catalonia
  8. Four businessmen charged in Slovak journalist murder

Stalling on VAT reform costing billions, says Commission

German media outlet Correctiv, along with other newsrooms, have revealed how criminals annually cheat EU states out of billions in VAT fraud. The EU Commission says solutions exist - but member states refuse to budge on tax unanimity.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. UNESDAUNESDA welcomes Nicholas Hodac as new Director General
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersBrussels welcomes Nordic culture
  3. UNESDAUNESDA appoints Nicholas Hodac as Director General
  4. UNESDASoft drinks industry co-signs Circular Plastics Alliance Declaration
  5. FEANIEngineers Europe Advisory Group: Building the engineers of the future
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersNew programme studies infectious diseases and antibiotic resistance
  7. UNESDAUNESDA reduces added sugars 11.9% between 2015-2017
  8. International Partnership for Human RightsEU-Uzbekistan Human Rights Dialogue: EU to raise key fundamental rights issues
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersNo evidence that social media are harmful to young people
  10. Nordic Council of MinistersCanada to host the joint Nordic cultural initiative 2021
  11. Vote for the EU Sutainable Energy AwardsCast your vote for your favourite EUSEW Award finalist. You choose the winner of 2019 Citizen’s Award.
  12. Nordic Council of MinistersEducation gets refugees into work

Latest News

  1. EU open to imminent Brexit extension, Tusk indicates
  2. EU centrists ally with far right on migrant rescues
  3. MPs vote on Johnson's latest push for Brexit deal
  4. Macron breaks Balkans promise in quest for EU dominance
  5. Snap elections in North Macedonia after EU rejection
  6. UK opposition MPs attack new Brexit deal
  7. Deep divisions on display over post-Brexit EU budget
  8. Juncker: 'Historic mistake' against Balkan EU hopefuls

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us