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German informant linked to neo-nazi Cologne bombing

June 14, 2015

Investigations into murders and attacks by the right-wing NSU from 2000 to 2007 have indicated the involvement of a domestic intelligence informant. A 2001 Cologne bombing could have been planned by the undercover agent.

NSU Cologne attack
Image: dpa

The attack on an Iranian grocery store in the western German city of Cologne left the 19-year-old daughter of the shopkeeper seriously injured. The explosive was found in the tin of a German Stollen cake which had been left in a gift basket in the store.

According to a report published in the German Sunday newspaper "Welt am Sonntag," former leader of the intelligence service of the German state of North-Rhein Westphalia (NRW), Mathilde Koller, sent a "confidential" letter to the German Federal Prosecutor's Office after noticing a "similarity" between an undercover agent and the e-fit picture of the attacker. "Welt" reported, however, that the evidence of the man's complicity did not exist.

A week later, Koller reportedly wrote another note in which she explained that the man had "worked for the NRW intelligence service since 1989." According to the secret document, he was specifically appointed to a neo-nazi who had contacts in the NSU sphere. The fact that the man had been convicted in 1985 for an explosives offense was also reportedly concealed.

NSU Video
The NSU trio claimed responsibility for the Cologne attack in a videoImage: picture-alliance/dpa/Der Spiegel

Four months after Koller sent her comments, she stepped down for "personal reasons."

Racially motivated murders

The deceased alleged members of the neo-nazi NSU group, Uwe Böhnhardt and Uwe Mundlos, and their alleged accomplice Beate Zschäpe admitted to the attack on the Cologne grocery on a DVD in 2011. The trio also claimed responsibility for ten murders and the 2004 nail bomb attack in Cologne's Keupgasse.

Zschäpe has been on trial in Munich since 2013 on 27 charges linked to the bombings and murders. Eight of the victims were German residents of Turkish origin, one had roots in Greece. The tenth was a German policewoman.

On trial alongside Zschäpe are four other men from the neo-Nazi scene accused of abetting murder and supporting the NSU.

ksb/bw (AFP)