Germany’s federal prosecutor has said the deadly shootings at two hookah bars were fueled by deep-seated racism and investigations will focus on the suspect’s possible connections, both in Germany and abroad.
BBC reports that the suspect shot dead nine people “of migrant background” at two shisha bars on Wednesday evening. He and his mother were later found dead in his flat.
Peter Frank said the suspect Tobias R had posted online showed a “deeply racist mindset”.
He had also been influenced by conspiracy theories, Mr Frank said.
Earlier Chancellor Angela Merkel said there were many signs Tobias R, 43, had acted out of racism.
Speaking in Berlin, Mrs Merkel said: “Racism is a poison. Hate is a poison and this poison exists in our society and is already to blame for many crimes.”
Turkey says at least five of the dead were Turkish citizens. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he expected Germany to “throw light on all aspects” of the attack.
Nazi salutes, banned swastika emblems and even the playing of the Horst Wessel, the one-time Nazi “anthem” – all have been cropping up in far-right extremist circles as Germany struggles to contain a growing wave of home-grown extremism.
The problem has been particularly acute in – but not confined to – the east of the country, in the former East Germany. There, unemployment levels have been higher than in the rest of Germany and simmering resentment, by some, of the recent immigrant arrivals have manifested itself in arson attacks on hostels.
In 2015 Germany opened its borders to an estimated 1.5 million refugees from the Middle East. Although the number of subsequent incidents involving them has been very small, their arrival has been used by far-right extremists to stoke ethnic tensions and recruit more young men and women to their cause.(BBC)