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CRIME

1,000 police sent into Hamburg riots

Nearly 1,000 police officers were sent into the Schanzenviertel in central Hamburg on Saturday night after a street festival deteriorated into rioting.

1,000 police sent into Hamburg riots
Photo:DPA

Reports say 18 people, including 11 police officers were injured during the fighting between largely left-wing locals, anarchists and the police. Dozens of people were arrested.

Barricades were set up by the rioters, and rubbish bins set alight in the roads once the trouble began.

The Schanzenfest had attracted some 8,000 people on Saturday, and had been peaceful until the evening, when the fighting started, with bottles and stones thrown at riot police.

A similar outcome occurred last year as the festival came to an end.

The area is home to the Rote Flora theatre, which has long been a bone of contention between locals and the authorities, as it is used not only by artists, but also left-wingers and political activists.

It was stormed by police in July after officers tried to arrest a man who had been involved in a fight with a woman and run from the authorities into the building. When they tried to seize him, others in the building attacked the police, sparking a full-scale raid.

CRIME

German man jailed for killing petrol station worker in mask row

A 50-year-old German man was jailed for life Tuesday for shooting dead a petrol station cashier because he was angry about being told to wear a mask while buying beer.

German man jailed for killing petrol station worker in mask row

The September 2021 murder in the western town of Idar-Oberstein shocked Germany, which saw a vocal anti-mask and anti-vaccine movement emerge in response to the government’s coronavirus restrictions.

The row started when 20-year-old student worker Alex W. asked the man to put on a mask inside the shop, as required in all German stores at the time.

After a brief argument, the man left.

The perpetrator – identified only as Mario N. – returned about an hour and a half later, this time wearing a mask. But as he bought his six-pack of beer to the till, he took off his mask and another argument ensued.

He then pulled out a revolver and shot the cashier in the head point-blank.

On Tuesday, the district court in Bad-Kreuznach convicted Mario N. of murder and unlawful possession of a firearm, and handed him a life sentence.

READ ALSO: Shock in Germany after cashier shot dead in Covid mask row

Under German law, people given a life sentence can usually seek parole after 15 years. His defence team had sought a sentence of manslaughter, rather than murder.

At the start of the trial, prosecutor Nicole Frohn told how Mario N. had felt increasingly angry about the measures imposed to curb the pandemic, seeing them as an infringement on his rights.

“Since he knew he couldn’t reach the politicians responsible, he decided to kill him (Alex W.),” she said.

Mario N. turned himself in to police the day after the shooting.

German has relaxed most of its coronavirus rules, although masks are still required in some settings, such as public transport.

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