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Suicide Bomber in Online Chat Just Before Sunday's Attack in Germany

  • VOA News

FILE - Special police officers secure a street near the house where a Syrian man lived before the explosion in Ansbach, southern Germany, July 25, 2016.

FILE - Special police officers secure a street near the house where a Syrian man lived before the explosion in Ansbach, southern Germany, July 25, 2016.

A Syrian asylum-seeker who blew himself up Sunday outside a German music festival in the town of Ansbach was in contact with another person who influenced the attack immediately beforehand, Bavaria's interior minister said Wednesday.

"Apparently he had direct contact with someone who had significant influence on the way the attack played out," Joachim Herrmann was quoted by the DPA news agency as saying on the sidelines of a state government meeting. "The chat ended immediately before the attack," he said.

Herrmann said it was not immediately clear whether the other person in the chat was in contact with Islamic State, where he was at the moment of the explosion, or how long the two had been in contact.

The minister revealed Monday that the attacker had made a video pledging allegiance to IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi that was found on his smartphone.

Sunday's attack was the fourth act of violence against German civilians in a week.

Attacker Mohammad Daleel died and 15 people were wounded when the bomb exploded in a wine bar Sunday night after he was not allowed to enter a nearby open-air concert because he did not have a ticket.

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