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Germany sees over 1,100 offences linked to Israel-Hamas conflict

AFP
AFP - [email protected]
Germany sees over 1,100 offences linked to Israel-Hamas conflict
A demonstrator holds up a placard reading "Freedom for Palestine. Stop Zionism" during a pro-Palestinian rally in Frankfurt on October 14, 2023. Photo: Kirill KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP.

German police have recorded more than 1,100 offences in relation to the Israel-Gaza conflict since Hamas launched its deadly attack earlier this month, Interior Minister Nancy Faeser said Friday.

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"These are preliminary figures... and investigations are underway everywhere," Faeser told journalists in a press conference at the Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) in Wiesbaden.

Hamas militants stormed into Israel from the Gaza Strip on October 7, and killed at least 1,400 people, mostly civilians who were shot, mutilated or burnt to death on the first day of the raid, according to Israeli officials.

More than 4,100 Palestinians, mainly civilians, have been killed across the Gaza Strip in relentless Israeli bombardments in retaliation for the attacks by the Palestinian Islamist militant group, according to the latest toll from the Hamas health ministry in Gaza.

Since Israel began its bombing raids on Gaza, pro-Palestinian protests have erupted across major German cities despite widespread bans.

The recorded offences included "bodily harm... breaches of the peace, incitement to hatred and damage to property", BKA deputy chief Juergen Peter said at the same press conference. In all, a "low three-digit" figure of violent crimes had been recorded, Peter said.

Berlin had become a "hotspot" for offences, he said, with the majority occurring in the capital, where clashes between protesters and police were fiercest.

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Police had made "hundreds of provisional arrests" in Berlin, Faeser said, adding that this was "the right response".

"Over 100 police officers have been injured by thrown bottles and fireworks" in the city, Faeser said, adding that "this violence... is in no way acceptable."

In all, 46 gatherings related to the conflict had been prohibited by authorities since October 7, Faeser said. By contrast, 211 pro-Israel events and 129 pro-Palestinian events had taken place in that period, Faeser said.

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