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Manhunt launched for bombing suspect in Chemnitz

Published: October 8, 2016, 6:00 pm

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    Police in the German town of Chemnitz in Saxony have launched a manhunt for a 22-year-old Syrian who they suspect was planning to carry out a bomb attack in the country.

    A lockdown of Chemnitz was ordered, where authorities say they were investigating a terror plot after receiving a tip-off, APF reported.

    A police spokesman confirmed that the operation had been launched in response to information provided by domestic intelligence.

    A search warrant was issued on Saturday for Jaber Albakr, saying the immigrant was “suspected of preparing a bomb attack.” Albakr was born Syria in January 1994. He was last seen wearing a black hooded sweatshirt. Saxony Police have issued an appeal for help tracing the fugitive they described as “dangerous”.

    Scores of armed officers blocked the main railway station, evacuated residents and cordoned off large areas of the Fritz Heckert district on Saturday morning. Authorities were checking baggage at station where two suspects were arrested.

    A third suspect has also been taken into custody.

    A second wave of evacuations was launched within hours after police found “highly-volatile explosives” during searches, sparking a wider safety cordon.

    Residents in the town were told to stay indoors during the operation.

    “We are carrying out in Chemnitz a large-scale operation due to suspicions that a bomb attack was being prepared,” police said on Twitter.

    A spokesperson for Saxony’s criminal police, said investigators found more than 100g of the material at a flat linked to the suspect.

    An explosion has been heard in the town. “The explosion heard in the area was a police entry measure. The wanted person has not been found,” police said.

    Germany suffered two terror attacks claimed in July — an axe rampage on a train in Wuerzburg that injured five and a suicide bombing in Ansbach that left 15 wounded. Concerns over the country’s record influx of migrants and refugees last year are mounting.

    German police said previously they had identified 523 people who posed a security threat. Half of them are currently residing in Germany, and earlier this year, police said they were busy investigating more than 400 tip-offs over migrants alleged to have extremist links in the country.

    Europol estimates that up to 5 000 militants may have undergone training, calling it the “biggest terror threat in more than a decade”.

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