• Germany's news in English
 

Two Americans shot dead at Frankfurt Airport

Published: 02 Mar 2011 16:29 GMT+01:00
Updated: 02 Mar 2011 22:24 GMT+01:00

Police spokesman Jürgen Linker said the incident occurred at Terminal 2 on a bus used to transport US military personnel. The bus driver and one member of the US Air Force were reportedly killed.

"Two airmen have been killed and two were wounded during a shooting incident today at Frankfurt International Airport," US Air Forces Europe said in a statement.

The victims had just flown in from Britain and were about to travel to Ramstein airbase near Frankfurt, German police said.

Chancellor Angela Merkel expressed her condolences to the friends and families of the deceased. "This is a horrible event," she told reporters in Berlin.

The shooting came a month after Germany's authorities had announced that additional security measures imposed late last year in response to indications of an imminent "terrorist" attack were set to be gradually scaled back.

The police initially said they believed there was an altercation near the bus before the shooting occurred around 3:20 pm and there was no clear indication that it was an act of terrorism. However, by Wednesday evening evidence was mounting that it could have been a targeted attack against US forces.

The authorities said a 21-year-old suspect from Kosovo living in Frankfurt had been overpowered after fleeing into the terminal building.

Boris Rhein, interior minister for the state of Hesse, said the man had apparently approached the bus and shot a US solider standing in front of the vehicle before killing the driver in his seat. He said the motive for the shooting remained unknown.

"I am consciously speaking of homicide and not an attack," said Rhein at the scene of the shooting. "But at the moment nothing can be ruled out."

The suspect used a handgun, Rhein said, while media reports said that the man also had a knife. There was no exchange of fire aboard the bus.

Another police spokesman said that those injured were taken to a civilian hospital, but he was unable to say if they were in a critical condition.

US President Barack Obama, in a surprise appearance in the White House briefing room, said that the US government would "spare no effort" to find out the circumstances of the attack.

"We will be working with German authorities to ensure that all the perpetrators are brought to justice," Obama said, describing the shooting a "stark reminder" of the sacrifices US service members serving abroad made.

The US military has a number of major bases near Frankfurt, including Ramstein, which are used as hubs for operations in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Photobucket

Click here for photos of the incident.

DPA/AFP/DAPD/The Local/mry

Related links:

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Today's headlines
'Blackfacing' is Anglicism of the Year
They may be collecting for charity, but this is not really OK. Photo: DPA

'Blackfacing' is Anglicism of the Year

"Blackfacing", used by Germans to describe white people painting their skin dark to mimic black people, has been named Anglicism of the Year by a jury of linguists. READ  

Cocaine-cop trial shakes Bavarian Alps
File photo: DPA

Cocaine-cop trial shakes Bavarian Alps

For 20 years no-one noticed that the head of the drug squad in Kempten, Bavaria, was on a personal rampage of narcotics- and domestic abuse - until his wife shopped him for the €250,000 brick of cocaine he had stashed. But the local population isn't buying the story. READ  

Merkel wishes Tsipras 'strength and success'
Photo: DPA

Merkel wishes Tsipras 'strength and success'

Chancellor Angela Merkel congratulated Greece's new Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras on Tuesday and wished him "much strength and success" after his anti-austerity party's election victory. READ  

Refugees suffer over 200 attacks in 2014
Swastika graffiti at a refugee home in Bavaria with text reading "No asylum seekers". Photo: DPA

Refugees suffer over 200 attacks in 2014

Refugee NGOs' first annual report on violence against asylum seekers found that there were over 200 attacks on people and accommodation in 2014. READ  

'No German identity without Auschwitz'
President Gauck addressing the Bundestag on the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. Photo: DPA

'No German identity without Auschwitz'

President Joachim Gauck on Tuesday warned Germans against drawing a line under the Holocaust as the Bundestag (parliament) opened a day of commemorations on the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. READ  

Handball! Neuer blows whistle on wax double
Manuel Neuer at the inauguration of his double in Berlin. Photo: DPA

Handball! Neuer blows whistle on wax double

Madame Tussauds' hottest new effigy was unveiled to the public in Berlin on Tuesday, costing a euro for each of the 150,000 hairs on keeper Manuel Neuer's head. Pity about the handball goal frame though… READ  

Railway union threatens strike over €2
EVG members outside a station during a 2013 strike. Photo: DPA

Railway union threatens strike over €2

As railway operator Deutsche Bahn (DB) continues negotiations with train drivers' union GDL, its other major union EVG has threatened a strike over pay differences between employees. READ  

Dresden tolerance concert draws 22,000
Photo: DPA

Dresden tolerance concert draws 22,000

As Pegida supporters and opponents clashed in Hanover, musicians threw a free concert in central Dresden on Monday evening to show another side to the city famous for spawning the anti-Islam movement. READ  

Germany remembers horror of Auschwitz
"Work will set you free," the gate at Auschwitz-Birkenau tells inmates. Photo: DPA

Germany remembers horror of Auschwitz

Chancellor Angela Merkel joined survivors of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp in Berlin on Monday to open a series of events dedicated to the end of the Holocaust camp regime 70 years ago. READ  

JobTalk Germany: Entrepreneur series
'Work I love and a rewarding family life'
Working mum photo: Shutterstock

'Work I love and a rewarding family life'

Melanie Fieseler is a British business/career consultant and coach, and founder of Berlin-based WorkSmart. She is on a mission to help ambitious mums like herself successfully combine motherhood with building a fulfilling and rewarding career or business. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Business & Money
FATCA: 'The age of financial privacy is over'
Gallery
The best regional foods TTIP opponents want to protect
Photo: DPA
Features
The rise and spread of Pegida
Photo: Shutterstock
Culture
This cosplayer did not think his plan through
National
Europe in statistics - from Spain to Sweden
Photo: DPA
Politics
The Local's report from Pegida's largest ever demonstration.
Sponsored Article
Top-notch tech boosts bilingual schools
National
Six stories that will rock Germany this year
Photo: DPA
National
Terror alert at a new high. Should you be worried?
Dresden skyline and river by night. Photo: DPA
Politics
What does Dresden have against Muslims?
Photo: DPA
National
What were your favourite news stories of 2014?
Gallery
Top 12 German idioms
National
Why has The Local got a new logo?
Photo: DPA
National
This German was abducted and tortured by the CIA
Culture
10 top tips for partying in Germany
Photo: DPA
Technology
What does the Chancellor see as the future of the internet?
Photo: DPA
Berlin
The Local's series on 25 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,448
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd