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Germany: Man wielding hammer in Hamburg shot by police

Published June 16, 2024last updated June 16, 2024

A man tried to attack officers with a hammer in the St Pauli district of Hamburg. The incident took place before the city was due to host the Euro 2024 match between the Netherlands and Poland.

Police officers stand near an ambulance after a man wielding an axe was shot by officers in Hamburg, Germany, on June 16, 2024
A man wielding an axe has been shot by police in HamburgImage: Steven Hutchings/dpa/picture alliance

Police in the northern German city of Hamburg on Sunday shot and wounded a man who attempted to attack passersby with a pick hammer, authorities said.

The disturbance took place in the downtown St Pauli district of the city, near where 40,000 Dutch fans were marching, ahead of the Euro 2024 soccer match against Poland later.

Police play down any football connection

Police said the 39-year-old man had come out of a pub with the hammer in his hand and was waving it at officers in a "threatening manner."

Police had earlier described the tool as an ax.

"We assume that this is an isolated case, that is, disconnected from football ... I don't see any threat at all or any impact on the game today," Hamburg police spokesperson Sandra Levgrün said.

Police said the man was also carrying a Molotov cocktail.

The media reports said police used pepper spray against the attacker before deploying a firearm.

Warning shot fired first

One officer fired a warning shot before several other shots were fired and the man fell to the ground, local media reported.

The man was injured in the leg and was receiving medical treatment, police said. No one else was hurt.

Security has already been tightened ahead of Sunday's soccer match with hundreds of Hamburg and federal police officers deployed.

Hamburg: Police shoot man wielding pickax

Germany is hosting the month-long Euro 2024 tournament that began on Friday night.

On Friday, police in eastern Germany shot dead a man who went on the rampage, stabbing one man to death, before gatecrashing a house party for the championship's opening match. There he stabbed three other people, wounding two of them seriously.

Police said Sunday that the motive for that attack was still unclear.

mm/ab (dpa, Reuters)

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