In an attack with a suspected terrorist background at the Strasbourg Christmas market, two people have been killed and thirteen injured, according to official figures.
After initially unconfirmed information from the French broadcaster BFMTV, there were even at least four dead. The alleged perpetrator was also on late Tuesday evening still on the run. He was known to the police, according to French Interior Minister Christophe Castaner.
The police in Strasbourg confirmed to the German Press Agency (dpa), that they
expect a. The presumably radicalized man had been injured before his escape by patrolling soldiers, reported the AFP news agency, citing the police.
Anti-terrorism specialists from the Paris prosecutor’s office took over the investigation. Among other things, the investigation was handed over to the German secret service DGSI, as confirmed by the judiciary of the German Press Agency in Paris. French President Emmanuel Macron sent his Minister of the Interior to the Alsatian metropolis, as AFP reported, citing the Élysée Palace.
The man should be arrested after a media report actually on Tuesday morning. As the station France Info reported on Tuesday evening, citing police sources, but he was not at home. Accordingly, he is accused of attempted murder. It is a 29-year-old.
For years, France has been shaken by an Islamist terror series. So far, almost 250 people have been torn from life.
In the incident, shots had been fired in the evening. The police cordoned off parts of the city center. The Interior Ministry in Paris spoke without further details of a „serious public security event“. Residents should stay at home.
The European Parliament in the Alsatian city has been sealed off. No one should leave the building, employees were warned by mobile phone short message or mail, said a spokeswoman for the dpa.
„My thoughts are with the victims of the shootings in Strasbourg, which I strongly condemn,“ wrote European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker in the short message service Twitter. Strasbourg is a symbolic city for peace and European democracy. „Values that we will always defend.“ The EU Commission is on the side of France.
The German government spokesman Steffen Seibert said on Twitter «shattered by the terrible news» from Strasbourg. „Whatever the motive behind the shots: We mourn the dead and with our thoughts and wishes we are with the injured. I hope nobody gets in danger anymore. “
At the German-French border crossing the police checked cars in the evening, which drove from Germany to France, as a dpa reporter reported. „We are currently reinforcing (…) the controls at the Franco-German border in this area,“ said the Federal Police Baden-Württemberg on Twitter. Later she tweeted that the traffic of a cross-border tram had been stopped. „If possible, please avoid the border crossing in the #Kehl area“, it said.
In Strasbourg itself sirens were heard. A street south of downtown was closed off. A man approaching the barrier was told to turn around. When he did not comply, several security forces turned their weapons on him. Finally he turned back. Police asked Twitter not to spread false information.
The Strasbourg market should already be the target of an attack: in the year 2000, a planned explosive attack by an Algerian group was prevented in time.