9 killed in bar shootings in Germany
HANAU (Germany), Feb 20: A shooter with suspected far-right beliefs killed nine people at a shisha bar and a cafe in the German city of Hanau, police said on Thursday, before apparently killing himself and his mother.
Federal counter-terror prosecutors announced they were investigating the case, which showed "signs of a xenophobic motive", a spokesman told AFP.
Among the dead were "several victims of Kurdish origin", the Kon-Med association of Kurds in Germany said in a statement, adding that it was "furious" that authorities were not doing more to combat rightwing extremism.
Alarm has been growing about an increasingly emboldened far-right movement in Germany, following a deadly anti-Semitic attack in Halle and the murder of a pro-migrant politician last year.
The suspected gunman in Hanau was identified as 43-year-old German Tobias R.
He left behind online a "manifesto" and video material that suggested a terror attack motivated by "a hostile attitude to foreigners", said Peter Beuth, the interior minister of the state of Hesse.
The rampage started at around 10:00 pm (2100 GMT) on Wednesday at a shisha bar in the Heumarkt area of central Hanau, a city some 20 kilometres (12 miles) east of Frankfurt.
The gunman reportedly rang the doorbell and shot at people in the smoking section, killing five, including a woman, mass-market daily Bild said.
He then fled the scene by car before opening fire at the "Arena Bar & Cafe", killing three people outside the building, local media said, with witnesses reporting hearing a dozen shots.
Police said one of those injured had also died, bringing the toll from the bar attacks to nine. Manhunt Another person who was injured remains in critical condition, Beuth told reporters.
"The victims are people we have known for years," the Arena cafe manager's son told German news agency DPA. "It is a shock for everyone."
The bloodshed sparked an hours-long manhunt, with armed officers fanning out across the city and police helicopters roaming the night sky. -AFP