busy shopping mall in the German city of Munich on Friday evening,
spraying bullets as people fled in horror for safety from what police
said was a terrorist attack.
said six people had been killed and the attackers were still at large.
They told the public to get off the streets as the city – Germany’s
third biggest – went into lockdown, with transport halted and highways
As special forces rushed to the scene, some people remained holed up in the Olympia shopping center.
shots were fired, I can’t say how many but it’s been a lot,” said a
shop worker hiding in a store room inside the mall.
The woman, who asked
not to be identified, said she had seen a shooting victim on the floor
who appeared to be dead or dying.
worker at a different shop, Harun Balta, said: “We are still stuck
inside the mall without any information, we’re waiting for the police to
It was the third
major act of violence against civilians in Western Europe in eight days.
Previous attacks in France and Germany were claimed by the Islamic
State militant group.
spokeswoman said six people were killed and an undetermined number
wounded. No suspects had been arrested yet, she said.
believe there was more than one perpetrator. The first reports came at 6
p.m. (1700 GMT), the shooting apparently began at a McDonald’s in the
shopping center. There are still people in the shopping center. We are
trying to get the people out and take care of them,” the spokeswoman
Bavarian broadcaster BR said six people were
dead and many wounded in the shopping mall. Munich police said on
Facebook that witnesses reported three different gunmen armed with
A video posted online –
whose authenticity could not be confirmed – showed a man dressed in
black outside a McDonalds by the roadside, drawing a handgun and
shooting towards members of the public.
Police said witnesses had seen shooting both inside the mall and on nearby streets.
shopping center is next to the Munich Olympic stadium, where the
Palestinian militant group Black September took 11 Israeli athletes
hostage and eventually killed them during the 1972 Olympic Games.
main railway station was also evacuated. BR said police had also
sealed off many highways north of Munich had been shut down and people
were told to leave them.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility but supporters of Islamic State celebrated the rampage on social media.
“Thank God, may God bring prosperity to our Islamic State men,” read one tweet.
“The Islamic state is expanding in Europe,” read another.
attack took place a week after a 17-year-old asylum-seeker wounded
passengers on a German train in an ax rampage. Bavarian police shot dead
the teenager after he wounded four people from Hong Kong on the train
and injured a local resident while fleeing.
Justice Minister Heiko Maas told Bild newspaper’s Friday edition before
the mall attack that there was “no reason to panic but it’s clear that
Germany remains a possible target”.
incidents in Germany follow an attack in Nice, France, on Bastille Day
in which a Tunisian drove a truck into crowds, killing 84. Islamic State
also claimed responsibility for that attack.
is also the five-year anniversary of the massacre by Anders Behring
Breivik in Norway. Breivik is a hero for far-right extremists in Europe
The Munich assault was
also reminiscent of Islamist militant attacks in a shopping mall in
Nairobi, Kenya, in September 2013 and in Mumbai, India, in November