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Forensics experts standing close to a regional train
German police said that there were no indications of a terrorist background to Wednesday's knife attack Image: Jonas Walzberg/dpa/picture alliance

Germany: No sign of terror motive in knife attack on train

January 26, 2023

A 33-year-old man of Palestinian origin is accused of stabbing multiple people on a train in northern Germany. Authorities say a 16-year-old female and a 19-year-old male were killed in the attack.

German prosecutors on Thursday said that there was no sign of a terrorist motive behind a knife attack on a train traveling between the northern cities of Hamburg and Kiel.

"There are no indications of a terrorist background," prosecutor's office spokesperson Peter Müller-Rakow told the Agence France-Presse (AFP) news agency.

The stabbing took place Wednesday afternoon on a regional train near the town of Brokstedt. 

Sabine Sütterlin-Waack, Interior Minister of the northern state of Schleswig-Holstein, said that a 16-year-old female and a 19-year-old male were killed in the attack, adding that the two victims knew each other.

The minister said that three of the seven wounded remained in hospital, two of them with critical injuries.

Waack said that many details still remained unclear due to "dynamic" developments, adding that a motive had yet to be established.

Schleswig-Holstein's interior minister praises passengers


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What else do we know about the suspect?

The 33-year-old suspect is a stateless man of Palestinian origin. According to Waack, he first arrived in Germany in 2014.

He is set to appear before a magistrate on Thursday.

Police said the suspect went on a stabbing spree just before 3 p.m. local time (1400 GMT).

Three passengers had managed to restrain the attacker, police said. He was then detained by law enforcement when the train reached Brokstedt station.

Police said the suspect had only recently been released from prison before committing the attack. He had been detained in a Hamburg correctional institution in connection with an assault case.

Carsten Ohlrogge, chief prosecutor of the city of Itzehoe in Schleswig-Holstein, said the suspect had three prior convictions.

Police said the suspect had been released from hospital on Thursday after being treated for minor injuries and was again in custody.

sdi/nm (AFP, dpa)

2 killed in knife attack on German train


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