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Seven WWII bombs defused at Tesla's factory site near Berlin

AFP
AFP - [email protected]
Seven WWII bombs defused at Tesla's factory site near Berlin

Experts have safely defused seven World War II bombs found on the future location of Tesla's first European factory, just outside Berlin.

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The defusing operation was completed on Sunday "without any problems", a police spokesman told DPA news agency.

The bombs in question were relatively small and dropped by the US air force during the war.

Some 75 years after the war, Germany remains littered with unexploded ordnance, often uncovered during construction work.

Electric car pioneer Tesla last week agreed to buy a 300-hectare plot of land in Grünheide, east of Berlin in the state of Brandenburg, for €40.9 million ($45.5 million).

The site will become home to the US tech firm's first "Gigafactory" in Europe.

Tesla said it plans to begin churning out the firm's Model Y SUV and Model 3 sedan as soon as 2021, ultimately producing 500,000 cars per year.

While many local officials and residents have welcomed the thousands of jobs set to be created in the region, the project has sparked controversy because of its location in a wooded area.

READ ALSO: Protests as Tesla receives approval for factory purchase near Berlin

Critics claim the planned deforestation will be harmful to local wildlife and could endanger the drinking water supply.

Dozens of people have protested against Tesla's arrival in recent weeks.

Tesla chief Elon Musk on Saturday took to Twitter to defend the factory.

"Sounds like we need to clear up a few things!" the billionaire entrepreneur tweeted.

In response to criticism that Tesla's factory would need to use some 300 cubic metres of water per hour, Musk said that would be at peak times only and "not an everyday event".

He also said the forest was not a natural woodland.

"It was planted for use as cardboard & only a small part will be used" for the factory, he added.

READ ALSO: Tesla gets green light for factory site near Berlin

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