An Islamic State-run media outlet said the teenage Afghan refugee who carried out an ax and knife attack in Germany on Monday was a “fighter” of the group.
“The perpetrator of the stabbing attack in Germany was one of the fighters of the Islamic State,” the Aamaq news agency said.
The claim came hours after a 17-year-old Afghan asylum seeker attacked passengers with an ax and knife on a train near Wuerzburg-Heidingsfeld on Monday night, before he was shot and killed by a special police unit.
Four members of a family visiting from Hong Kong were injured in the attack, two critically.
The statement said the attacker was “a member of the Islamic State” group who took action in response to the terror group’s calls urging attacks on countries that are members of the anti-IS coalition.
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It’s not clear if the Hong Kong family was specifically targeted. China is not a member of the US-led coalition carrying out bombing raids against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.
Earlier on Tuesday, a hand-painted flag of the Islamic State group was found among the belongings of the teen, who had been staying with a foster family in the region.
German authorities said they strongly suspected an Islamist motive in the stabbing attack.
The assault left two of the victims in a critical condition, said Joachim Herrmann, the interior minister of Bavaria state.
“It is quite probable that this was an Islamist attack,” said a ministry spokesman, adding that the assailant had shouted “Allahu akbar” (God is greatest).
However, he stressed that the investigation was ongoing and that the teenager appeared to have acted alone.
An eyewitness who lives next to the railway station told DPA news agency that the train, which had been carrying around 25 people, looked “like a slaughterhouse” with blood covering the floor.
The man, who declined to give his name, said he saw people crawl from the carriage and ask for a first-aid kit as other victims lay on the floor inside.
“The perpetrator was able to leave the train, police left in pursuit and as part of this pursuit, they shot the attacker and killed him,” a police spokesman said.
Herrmann later said the teenager was shot when he attacked police while trying to escape the scene.
Germany has thus far escaped the kind of large-scale jihadist attacks seen in the southern French city of Nice last week, in which 31-year-old Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel used a truck to mow down people leaving a Bastille Day fireworks display, killing 85 people.
That attack was also claimed by the Islamic State group according to the Aamaq news agency.