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CRIME

‘Police killer’ confesses to shooting officer

UPDATE: A suspect has been arrested following the killing of an off-duty police officer in western Germany on Wednesday night. The shooting sparked a large manhunt near Frankfurt on Thursday.

'Police killer' confesses to shooting officer
Officers searching a field on Thursday near the scene of the killing. Photo: DPA
The 50-year-old officer was shot dead in the street in Bischofsheim, Hesse, prompting a manhunt on Thursday with dogs and helicopters for the suspected shooter. Prosecutors also offered a €5,000 cash reward for information.

Late on Thursday police in Darmstadt said they had arrested a 57-year-old man at his apartment following a tip-off. He has already confessed, according to police

The motive for Wednesday’s killing remains unclear, but it had nothing to do with the victim's career choice, investigators said on Friday. 

The officer was shot while walking his dog with his wife and a friend around the edge of a field.
 
The group noticed a man following them who kept stopping when they stopped. 
 
When the police officer, who was dressed in civilian clothes, challenged him, the shooter opened fire.
 
"We're appalled by the murder of our colleague in southern Hesse and are stunned by this cruel, cowardly and senseless act," said Heini Schmidt, head of the regional chapter of the DPolG police union.

"We hope that the brutal murderer will be caught very soon and given his just punishment, even though this can be of no comfort and will not bring our colleague back." 

SEE ALSO: Manhunt on for policeman's killer

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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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