A Ticking Time Bomb | Germany| News and in-depth reporting from Berlin and beyond | DW | 11.01.2002
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A Ticking Time Bomb

There are still thousands of unexploded bombs from World War II in and around the German capital.


Deadly reminders of the past - a WW II British bomb found in Berlin

An unexploded British World War II bomb was found under Berlin's Olympic Stadium. It was defused on Wednesday by explosives experts.

The bomb, which had a defective trigger, was detected under a lower ring of seats by construction workers restoring the stadium prior to the 2006 World Cup.

The bomb, which weighed 250 kilograms, was filled with 125 kilos of explosives and could have gone off at any time.

"When you consider that, during its high points, the Olympic Stadium has held as many as 100 thousand visitors, then it would surely have caused a great number of deaths and injuries," police spokesman Friedrich-Christian Wehmann said.

The Olympic stadium in Berlin was built by Nazi Architect Albert Speer for the 1936 Olympics. It is now home to the football club Hertha Berlin and is undergoing renovations until the end of 2004. The stadiums is to be one of the venues for the 2006 soccer World Cup.

There are thought to still be thousands of unexploded bombs in and around Berlin. Wartime bombs are still found regularly all over Germany, more than half a century after the Second World War. The problem is expected to remain for a further 20 years.