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Several wounded in knife attack on German high-speed train

Local police say no further danger after arrest of alleged attacker, who newspaper identifies as being of ‘Arab origin’; motive still unclear

German police and rescue workers walk with a detained man, on November 6, 2021, in Seubersdorf, southern Germany, after several people were wounded in a knife attack on a high-speed train. (Fabian Schreiner/dpa/AFP)
German police and rescue workers walk with a detained man, on November 6, 2021, in Seubersdorf, southern Germany, after several people were wounded in a knife attack on a high-speed train. (Fabian Schreiner/dpa/AFP)

BERLIN (AFP) — Several people were wounded on Saturday in a knife attack on a high-speed train in southern Germany, local police said, adding the alleged perpetrator had been arrested.

The motive for the attack on the passenger train, making its way from the Bavarian city of Regensburg to Hamburg, was not yet clear.

“According to preliminary information, several people were injured,” police in Neumarkt in der Oberpfalz said in a statement, saying there was “no more danger.”

The Bild newspaper said at least three people had been hurt, two of them seriously.

A police spokeswoman said none of them had suffered life-threatening injuries.

‘Horrible’ attack

A man has been arrested, police said, without giving any more details.

According to Bild, the suspect is a 27-year-old man of “Arab origin” who may be suffering from psychiatric problems.

The ICE high-speed train was halted in the station of Seubersdorf in the south.

An ICE high-speed train is seen at the train station of Seubersdorf, southern Germany, on November 6, 2021, after several people were wounded in a knife attack on the train. (dpa/AFP)

“This knife attack is horrible,” Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said on Twitter.

“I would like to thank everyone, especially the police and the train staff, for their brave action, which prevented something even worse from happening.

“The motive for the crime is still unclear and will now be determined.”

The attack took place at a tense time in Germany, which faces terror threats from jihadists and right-wing extremist groups.

Islamist suspects have committed several violent attacks in recent years, the deadliest being a truck rampage at a Berlin Christmas market in December 2016 that killed 12 people.

The Tunisian attacker, a failed asylum seeker, was a supporter of the Islamic State jihadist group.

‘Radical Islamists’

Seehofer said earlier this year that German authorities had foiled 23 attempted attacks since 2000.

“Germany and Western Europe are still in the sights of radical Islamists,” he warned at the time.

Horst Seehofer (CSU), Federal Minister of the Interior, for Construction and Home Affairs, presents the case figures of politically motivated crime for the year 2020 at the Federal Press Conference in Berlin, Germany, May 4, 2021. (Kay Nietfeld/dpa via AP)

Since 2013, the number of Islamists considered dangerous in Germany has increased fivefold to 615, according to the interior ministry.

Several attacks or attempted attacks were carried out by asylum seekers who arrived in Germany during the 2015 migration crisis.

Chancellor Angela Merkel opened the country’s doors to some 900,000 asylum seekers.

German officials believe the attackers planned their acts alone, unlike some of the attacks in France in 2015 that were ordered by the Islamic State jihadist group.

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