Many Killed, Others Injured In Shooting At Jehovah’s Witness Hall In Germany
A number of people were killed and injured in a shooting at a Jehovah’s witness meeting hall in Germany‘s Northern Hamburg City late on Thursday.
Police say the gunman acted alone, and is thought to be dead. It is unclear if the attacker is among the six or seven fatalities reported by German Media.
The gunman is a former member of the religious community aged between 30 and 40, reports Der Spiegel Magazine.
Police say they found a dead person at the scene who they believe may have been the perpetrator and investigations are continuing.
On Friday morning, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz described the shooting as a “brutal act of violence”. In a statement, the Jehovah’s witness community in Germany said it was “deeply saddened by the horrific attack on its members at the kingdom hall in hamburg after a religious service”.
David Semonian, a U.S.-based spokesman for Jehovah’s Witnesses, said in an emailed statement early Friday that members “worldwide grieve for the victims of this traumatic event.”
“The congregation elders in the local area are providing pastoral care for those affected by the event,” he wrote.
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Police spokesman Holger Vehren said police were alerted to the shooting Thursday night and were at the scene quickly. Student Laura Bauch, who lives nearby, said there were around four periods of shooting, German news agency DPA reported.
There were always several shots in these periods,” she said. Bauch said she looked out her window and saw a person running from the ground floor to the second floor of the Jehovah’s Witnesses hall.
Gregor Miebach, who lives within sight of the building, heard shots and filmed a figure entering the building through a window.