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German Police Arrest ‘Islamist’ Suspect After Soccer Bus Bombing

  • VOA News

Police investigators secure the streets near the team hotel of soccer team Borussia Dortmund, in Dortmund, Germany, April 12, 2017, a day after their team bus was damaged in an explosion, injuring a player and a police officer.

German police arrested a suspected Islamic extremist Wednesday as investigators said they are looking into a possible “terrorist link” to three explosions that hit the Borussia Dortmund soccer team’s bus, authorities said.

A series of explosions rocked the team’s bus Tuesday, injuring Dortmund player Marc Bartra and a policeman, and forcing the team to postpone a game against Monaco that evening.

Two suspects “from the Islamist spectrum have come into the focus of the criminal prosecution,” Frauke Koehler, a spokeswoman for federal prosecutors, said, adding that one of the two had been arrested.

According to German prosecutors, a note left at the scene of the bombing suggests the attack could have been carried out by Muslim extremists.

The note, she said, contained demands for the withdrawal of German military jets from Turkey and the shuttering of the U.S. Ramstein airbase in Germany.

She said police found three copies of the same letter near the site of the bombing that indicated the attacker had links to the Islamic State militant group. Police are still trying to determine the authenticity of the letter.

Local media identified the suspects as a 25-year-old Iraqi and a 28-year-old German.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she was "horrified" by the "repugnant act" and that she is hoping for a “peaceful and good game” when the two teams meet (Wednesday) for the rescheduled match.

The injured player, Bartra, posted a message on Instagram saying he is “doing much better” along with a photo of him giving a thumbs up with a bandage wrapped around his arm.

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