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Knife attack at Flensburg train station

May 30, 2018

At least one person, likely the assailant, has been killed in a knife attack in the northern city of Flensburg. Police cleared the area around the train station amid reports of two people with severe injuries.

Police cars in Flensburg train station
Image: picture-alliance/nordpresse mediendienst/S. Iwersen

Germany's federal police confirmed on Wednesday that a knife attack had taken place on a train approaching the central train station of the northern city of Flensburg, on the Danish border. There has been at least one fatality and two injuries, according to local media. 

Germany's daily Bild reported that the assailant got into a dispute with a male passenger and stabbed him. The man survived but is seriously injured. A policewoman who happened to be on the train confronted the attacker and was also hurt in the incident. The officer eventually fired her weapon to take down the assailant.

According to German DPA news agency, the attacker was a 24-year-old Eritrean man who had arrived in Germany in September 2015 as a refugee. Investigators had so far found no indications that the incident had a terrorist motivation, DPA said.

The reasons for the dispute that led to the attack and the question of whether the two men involved knew each other remain unclear, according to the DPA report.

Read more: Man on trial for knife attack on Altena Mayor Andreas Hollstein

'Violence must never be tolerated'

The incident took place at approximately 7 p.m. local time (1700 UTC), onboard an intercity train that was traveling to Flensburg via Cologne and Hamburg. The train was still 20 kilometers (12 miles) away from Flensburg at the time of the attack.

German Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said he was "deeply upset" by the attack. "Violence must never be tolerated, be it against the public or against the police," he said.

The area around the train station was evacuated and closed off.

es/rc (AFP, dpa)

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