Germany: Berlin Christmas market evacuated over reported suspicious objects | News | DW | 21.12.2019
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Germany: Berlin Christmas market evacuated over reported suspicious objects

The Christmas market at Breitscheidplatz, where an Islamist terrorist carried out a deadly truck attack in 2016, was evacuated over reports of suspicious packages. But police later said nothing of the sort was found.

German police said on Saturday that they had asked visitors to Berlin's Christmas market at Breitscheidplatz to leave the area after receiving information about suspicious objects.

A concert event at the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church had also been broken off as part of the same operation, police said on Twitter.

Visitors left the Christmas market "calmly and considerately," they said.

In 2016, the market was the scene of a deadly terrorist attack in which 12 people died after a rejected asylum-seeker from Tunisia plowed a stolen truck into a crowd of visitors.

The attacker, Anis Amri, was later killed in Italy while on the run from police.

A policeman with gun near the Christmas market (Reuters/A. Hilse)

Police said the evacuation was a 'sensitive reaction' in view of the 2016 attack

Read more: Germany: Nine terror attacks prevented since Berlin Christmas market killings

Suspicious behavior

Police later said that the Christmas market had been evacuated because of two men who were behaving suspiciously. They said no arrests had been made, contradicting several newspaper reports, and that no suspicious objects had been found.

A police spokeswoman also said the suspicion that there was an arrest warrant for one of the men had turned out to be unfounded and was the result of a similarity of names. 

 tj/aw (dpa, AFP)

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