+++ Munich attack: Germany reacts +++ | News | DW | 23.07.2016
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+++ Munich attack: Germany reacts +++

Germany is in mourning for the victims of the Munich mass shootings, which killed nine people. Police say the gunman had no links to the so-called 'Islamic State' but was 'obsessed' with mass killers. Follow the latest.

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Munich shooting - teenager kills nine and himself

The main points:

- An 18-year-old German-Iranian dual national killed nine people in a mass shooting on Friday evening before killing himself.

- Twenty-seven people were wounded, including children. Three of them are in a critical condition.

- The shooting happened close to a shopping mall in central Munich.

- The suspect had no previous criminal record, was born in Germany and had no links to Islamist militants, police say. He was, however, "obsessed" with mass killers, according to police.

- Chancellor Angela Merkel has said that the country's security services will "do everything possible to protect the security and freedom of all people in Germany."

Time line of events up to Saturday afternoon, July 23 2016

All updates in Universal Coordinated Time (UTC)

16.50 The Eiffel Tower in Paris, France is to be illuminated in German colors this evening in tribute to the victims of the Munich attack:

16.16 DW reports from Munich:

Bavarian state Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann and German Interior Minister Thomas De Maiziere have visited a site near the Olympia shopping mall, where Friday's shooting started.

16.07 Sports clubs around Germany have marked a minute's silence before playing and competing this afternoon, including Bayern Munich ahead of their friendly match:

16.00 Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande have agreed to "further intensify" their work together on security issues. The two leaders spoke by telephone on Saturday afternoon. Afterwards, Merkel's spokeswoman Ulrike Demmer said it had reinforced that "in these difficult times, it is good to know that France and Germany, the French and the Germans, stand closely together."

15.23

Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere has made a statement on reports that a post had been issued on a Facebook account of an individual not involved in the attack. It invited people to visit the McDonald's restaurant - where the attack took place - with the promise of a special offer.

15.03 The German Foreign Office has published online, in German, a video of Chancellor Angela Merkel speaking today about the shootings, mourning those who will never return to their families and paying tribute to the work of the security forces and to the people of Munich who had helped people get off the streets last night by taking them into their homes during the attack:

14.53 The US Secretary of State John Kerry has spoken with German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier by telephone. Afterwards, the State Department issued this statement: "Secretary Kerry spoke with his German counterpart, Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier earlier today. He expressed his profound condolences over the attack yesterday in Munich and pledged any U.S. assistance to German authorities as they carry out their investigation. Secretary Kerry also conveyed our strong commitment to stand united with Germany against such acts of violence. He thanked the Foreign Minister for Germany's important role in the counter-ISIL coalition and for its generous contribution to last week's Iraq pledging conference."

14.27 The fact that the shootings took place on the 5th anniversary of deadly shootings in Norway is leading to suggestions that the Munich shooter could have been motivated by them. Munich police chief Hubertus Andrae said there was an "obvious" link between the Munich attack and the deaths of 77 people, murdered by Anders Behring Breivik on July 22 2011.

Norway's minister for foreign affairs, Borge Brende, noted the significance of the date as he sent out a tweet late Friday night:

Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere, however, had said at his press conference earlier on Saturday that it was too early to give any information as to any possible link to the Norway massacre.

14.07 Spain's government has issued a statement condemning the Munich attack, calling it a "senseless, cowardly and criminal act." It offered sympathy for the victims and its "complete support for the German government and authorities in the fight against violence and for democracy and liberty."

13.56 Kosovo will hold a day of mourning Sunday for the three ethnic Albanians killed in the Munich shooting. President Hashim Thaci said he considered the two young girls and the man who died as "heroes in the war for the joint freedom and values in Europe."

13.34 Deputy Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel has said "it's not clear where the weapons came from" for the Munich attack, and there is no reason to speculate at this time. He also expressed thanks and relief that the act was not connected to international terrorism, and that it was an isolated incident committed by a lone perpetrator.

13.12 Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere has held a press conference in Berlin after cutting short his US holiday following the mass shooting. De Maiziere was mid-flight as the attack unfolded on Friday evening.

"The brutal murders in Munich disturb me profoundly," he said, adding that his thoughts are with all the victims and their families. He was shocked that so many young people were tragically killed.

De Maiziere reassured the public that there was no evidence the attack was connected to any international terrorism, adding that the investigation is ongoing and will continue with the utmost intensity.

In response to a question of a possible connection with the Breivik attack in Norway five years ago, de Maiziere said that it was too early to give any information as to any possible link.

In response to a different journalist's question, he declined to speak of any legislative consquences in the wake of the attack.

He also praised emergency services, adding that: “Despite the difficult and unclear situation,” the authorities responded in an efficient and highly effective manner.

12.56 Bavaria's state premier Horst Seehofer and leader of the CSU, the Bavarian sister-party of Angela Merkel's Christian democrats, has held a second press conference in Munich, vowing to "find out what drove this perpetrator to such horrid acts."

"We are experiencing an acute threat situation," but he said he was "thankful to all, especially the special forces who showed they possess a massive capacity to react," in the face of such attacks.

12.34 German Chancellor Angela Merkel has begun a news conference in Berlin, after convening a meeting of the Federal Security Cabinet earlier Saturday. She told the Munich attack victims' families: "We share you pain ... our thoughts are with you."

She also paid tribute to first responders and security personnel, saying: "I think of our great security forces ... which last night worked with the highest professionalism ... they are giving all ... just like the emergency services."

Merkel also highlighted the compassion and generosity of neighbors in the Munich area, who opened their homes and hearts to help those stranded following the atrocity on Friday night.

"It is good that we have this solidarity and we have many friends" at this time, the Chancellor added.

In a reference to the recent Nice attack, she promised there would be no rest until it is clear how the perpretrators of such acts become radicalized. She closed by vowing there would also be no rest until the protection of all German people can be assured.

11.38 Greece's foreign ministry says a Greek man is among nine people shot dead by the gunman in Munich on Friday evening. Earlier, Turkey and Kosovo each confirmed that three of their nationals were killed.

11.37 An acquaintance of the Munich attacker tells DW's Jaafar Abdul Karim that he was quiet and reserved with a normal family background.

11.32 Tour de France riders have observed a minute's silence for the victims of the Munich mass shootings before the start on the 21st stage Saturday.

11.22 A minute's silence will be observed at all soccer games in Bavaria this weekend, including a friendly between German champions Bayern Munich and lower league side Landshut on Saturday.

2. Bundesliga team 1860 Munich has canceled a fanfest scheduled for Sunday in the wake of the deadly shooting spree.

"No one in Munich - and no 1860 fan - feels like celebrating this weekend," 1860 said on their website Saturday, adding the decision was also taken "out of respect for all the victims, their relatives and all involved."

11.19 DW's Dana Regev is in Munich, where many local residents have been paying tributes to the victims, with flowers, candles and cards. Follow her tweets: @Dana_Regev.

11.13 The press conference in Munich has now ended. A reminder that German Chancellor Angela Merkel is due to give her first public statement since the shootings at 2.30pm local time (12:30 UTC) Saturday. The Federal Security Cabinet has begun its emergency meeting.

Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere is due to speak at 3.00pm local time following the cabinet meeting and emergency talks with police and intelligence officials this morning.

11.01 Turkey's foreign minister says three Turks were among the victims of Friday night's attacks. Earlier, Kosovo's foreign ministry said three Kosovans were also among the dead.

10.56 Bavarian Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann says there is evidence that the attacker may have had "considerable mental disorders." The 18-year-old also had problems in his current education stream, he added.

10.45 Premier Seehofer announces a memorial ceremony for the victims at the Bavarian state parliament, to take place next week. In the meantime, members of the parliament will cancel appearances at certain public events. An official reception at the Bayreuth Festival has been called off.

In the coming weeks, Seehofer intends to submit proposals for amendments to the state's security laws, he told reporters.

10.40 Bavaria's state premier Horst Seehofer tells a news conference: "We have to do everything possible to defend our freedom, and without security there can't be any freedom."

10.38 Heimberger: it appears the gunman hacked a Facebook account urging people to come to the mall for a free giveaway.

10.37 Police believe the gunman may have been inspired by the 2011 massacre of 77 people by Anders Breivik in Norway. The Munich attack took place on the fifth anniversary of the Norway atrocity.

10.30 Andrä: the nine victims were found in and in front of the fast food restaurant and in the area of the Olympic shopping center.

10.16 Munich police chief Hubertus Andrä says there was no indication that anyone other than the shooter was involved in Friday night's attack. Police are still collecting evidence at the scene and no arrests have been made. Andrä said he could neither confirm or deny that the attack was aimed at young people.

10.09 Seven of the victims were teenagers, police say, revising up an earlier figure of five. No suicide note has been found yet. But the gunman had material on previous mass shootings in his room.

10.02 The state of Bavaria prosecutor's office spokesman says the gunman was in psychiatric and medical care for depression but had no criminal record. There was no evidence of a political motivation behind the attack, he added.

09.59 Heimberger: the attacker had an illegal 9mm caliber Glock pistol with 300 rounds of ammunition in his backpack. The serial number of the gun had been filed off.

09.52 Press conference underway. Bavaria's police chief Robert Heimberger says the attacker was born and grew up in Munich, where he also attended school. He had no ties to the "Islamic State" (IS) group, according to a search of his house and room. In addition to the 10 people killed in the shootings, including the attacker, 27 people have been wounded.

09.38 FC Bayern Munich has tweeted condolences to the Munich attack victims, adding that the club is "horrified" at what's happened. Silence will be observed at today's match against Landshut.

09:34 Many local residents have brought flowers and cards to the scene of last night's attack.

09.25 Police in Munich are due to hold a press conference in the next few minutes. DW will bring you regular updates.

09.15 A close ally of Chancellor Angela Merkel has called on the government to take action to halt the spread of violence following the deadly Munich gun attack.

Regardless of the motive, "we have to ensure that hatred and violence in our society does not spread further," says Volker Kauder, a parliamentary leader of Merkel's conservative Christian Democrats.

09.08 A neighbor of the alleged gunman has told the news agency Agence France-Press the 18-year-old was a "good person."

"I have never seen him angry. I have never heard of problems with the police or neighbors," said the woman, a native of Macadonia. The neighbor said the attacker's father is a taxi driver, while his mother working in the Karstadt department store. The assailant also has a younger brother, she said.

09.06 Munich mayor Dieter Reiter has expressed shock at the shooting. "These are difficult moments for Munich, he said, adding that he was impressed by the outpouring of solidarity by the city's residents.

09.03 Five teenagers were among the nine people killed in the shooting, a police spokesman has confirmed.

08.59 European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has sent his condolences to the victims of Friday's shooting.

08.56 The German news agency dpa reports that the gunman's parents had arrived in Germany in the 1990s and he had grown up here. Dpa reports that the attacker was a fan of computer games and had apparently glorified the teenager responsible the 2009 Willenden school shooting in southwestern Germany, where a gunman killed 15 people.

08.54 German Chancellor Angela Merkel is due to give her first public statement since the shootings at 2.30pm local time (12:30 UTC) Saturday. Before that, the Federal Security Cabinet will meet at 12:30pm.

07.59 Police commandos have conducted a dawn raid at an apartment in the Maxvorstadt neighborhood of Munich, which local media have identified as where the 18-year-old gunman lived with his parents.

07.40 Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere has ordered flags at federal government buildings to fly at half-staff in "an expression of sympathy" to the victims' families.

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