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CRIME

Grenade disguised as toy left on supermarket shelf

A hand grenade disguised as a toy and placed at child’s eye level on the shelf of a supermarket could have killed someone, say German prosecutors investigating it as an attempted murder.

Grenade disguised as toy left on supermarket shelf
Photo: DPA

A security guard working at the Real supermarket in Wetzlar near Frankfurt, spotted the grenade on the toy aisle, and called police who evacuated the shop.

Around 50 officers searched the supermarket while experts removed the grenade for examination.

It was “most probably functional,” said a spokesman for Hessen state prosecutor. He suggested that whoever had hidden the hand grenade was intending for it to go off.

He told the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung daily newspaper, “sadly we have assume he actively wanted to hurt children,” because the grenade was disguised as a toy and hidden among other toys.

Detectives are examining footage from the supermarket’s security cameras in the hunt for clues, but the public prosecutor spokesman said not all aisles were covered.

He admitted they were completely in the dark about who put the grenade there, and that “the motive of the attacker is unclear.” He added that the case was being treated as attempted murder.

The Local/jcw

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GERMANY AND ISRAEL

Germany in talks on further payout for 1972 Olympics victims

The German government says it is in talks over further compensation for victims of the attack on the Munich Olympics, as the 50th anniversary of the atrocity approaches.

Germany in talks on further payout for 1972 Olympics victims

Ahead of the commemoration in September, relatives of the Israelis killed have indicated they are unhappy with what Germany is offering.

“Conversations based on trust are taking place with representatives of the victims’ families,” a German interior ministry spokesman told AFP when asked about the negotiations.

He did not specify who would benefit or how much money had been earmarked, saying only that any package would “again” be financed by the federal government, the state of Bavaria and the city of Munich.

On September 5th, 1972, eight gunmen broke into the Israeli team’s flat at the Olympic village, shooting dead two and taking nine Israelis hostage, threatening to kill them unless 232 Palestinian prisoners were released.

West German police responded with a bungled rescue operation in which all nine hostages were killed, along with five of the eight hostage-takers and a police officer.

An armed police officer in a tracksuit secures the block where terrorists  held Israeli hostages at the Olympic Village in Munich on 5th September 1972.

An armed police officer in a tracksuit secures the block where terrorists held Israeli hostages at the Olympic Village in Munich on 5th September 1972. Photo: picture alliance / dpa | Horst Ossingert

The spokeswoman for the victims’ families, Ankie Spitzer, told the German media group RND that the amount currently on the table was “insulting” and threatened a boycott of this year’s commemorations.

She said Berlin was offering a total of €10 million including around €4.5 million already provided in compensation between 1972 and 2002 — an amount she said did not correspond to international standards. 

“We are angry and disappointed,” said Spitzer, the widow of fencing coach Andre Spitzer who was killed in the attack. “We never wanted to talk publicly about money but now we are forced to.”

RND reported that the German and Israeli governments would like to see an accord by August 15th.

The interior ministry spokesman said that beyond compensation, Germany intended to use the anniversary for fresh “historical appraisal, remembrance and recognition”.

He said this would include the formation of a commission of German and Israeli historians to “comprehensively” establish what happened “from the perspective of the year 2022”.

This would lead to “an offer of further acts of acknowledgement of the relatives of the victims of the attack” and the “grave consequences” they suffered.

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