“Solid information” about a “serious risk of attack bomb” have forced the evacuation of two stages in Hannover, Germany, one in which Chancellor Angela Merkel and several key ministers were to be present to honor the memory of the victims of attacks in Paris.
“We had serious indications that someone wanted to detonate a bomb at the stadium tonight,” said the public channel ARD, Volker Kluwe, head of the Hanover police.
A first bomb threat proved unfounded, said the police chief. “The first found suspicious package was harmless, but we received information to take seriously that an attack was planned,” he has said.
The first evacuation was decreed soccer stadium in Hanover while the part was to begin 90 minutes later. The stadium in Hanover, a town 280 km west of Berlin can accommodate up to 45,000 people.
A second amphitheater, the TUI-Arena, which was to occur the group Söhne Mannheims, was also evacuated. The auditorium can accommodate up to 14,000 people.
Among the spectators at the stadium in Hanover, was expected German Chancellor Angela Markel and some of his ministers. “Our message is clear: we will not let ourselves off the way we live. We must not give the victory to the terrorists that would be the cancellation of the match “, said Monday the Minister of Justice Heiko Maas.
Security requirements have, however, decided otherwise. AFP reports that a suspicious package was found near the stadium while the AP mentions a bomb threat. The chief of police of Hanover, Kluwe Volker, told a local radio station, NDR, that the evacuation was ordered because of “serious plans to blow up something.”
Players who went to the stadium were “diverted to a safe place,” said social media spokesman of the German soccer team, Jens Grittner.
Before the Germany-Netherlands match, the organizers had planned to honor the memory of victims of the attacks in Paris. Recall that suicide bombers blew themselves up near the Stade de France where they attended such a friendly game Friday night between Germany and France. At least one suicide bomber tried to get inside the amphitheater, but had been repressed. He detonated outside two other suicide bombers. Other attackers in Paris were also several attacks, killing 129 people and injuring 352 others.
This is not the only soccer game compromised by the enhancement of security measures in Europe. The clash between Belgium and Spain, which would also take place Tuesday evening in Brussels was also canceled for security reasons. Some information appears to indicate that the main suspect to following the Paris bombings took refuge in Belgium. The alleged mastermind of the attacks would also native to the area of the Belgian capital, where he led an Islamist cell.
This removal also comes as German police said they arrested five people in Aachen, near the Belgian border, after receiving a report of the main fugitive wanted in connection with the investigation into the attacks in Paris. Salah Abdelslam however would not have been intercepted, according to a report from the German weekly Der Spiegel.
This police operation was triggered after a report of people who thought they had seen in an employment center Salah Abdeslam, actively sought as part of the investigation into the attacks in Paris. Two women and a man were first arrested in a first police strike. Police then arrested two more people.