Berlin Christmas market incident probably 'terror attack' carried out by asylum seeker

12 people died in what German police are now treating as a suspected terror attack 

Tuesday 20 December 2016 07:11
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Video shows immediate aftermath of Berlin lorry attack

Police in Germany have detained a migrant in relation to the Berlin Christmas market incident in which 12 people died and 48 were injured, which they are now investigating as a suspected"terror attack."

They believe the man arrived in Germany in Ferbruary as a refugee from either Afghanistan or Pakistan, the German newswire DPA reported on Tuesday, citing unnamed security sources.

Police are treating the incident in which a lorry was driven into the crowd at Breitscheidplatz market in the German capital's city centre on Monday evening as deliberately intended to cause harm.

"Our investigators assume that the truck was deliberately steered into the crowd at the Christmas market at Breitscheidplatz," police said on Twitter.

"All police measures related to the suspected terrorist attack... are progressing at full steam and with the necessary diligence."

The German authorities had precious refrained from describing the bloody incident as a terror attack, but speaking to reporters on Monday night Minister of the Interior Thomas de Maiziere had said there are many things "pointing towards one."

The suspect was detained around one mile away (two kilometres) after fleeing the scene on foot.

He is not known to have any previous link to terror but has a history of petty crime, a German daily newspaper said. The truck was found to be registered in Poland.

For a full report of the Berlin lorry attack, click here.

The tragedy has parallels to the terrrorist attack in Nice, France in July, in which a driver ploughed through the Bastille Day crowds, killing 86 people and wounding 434.

The suspect, who was shot at the scene, was inspired by Islamic extremism.

In the wake of the incident, Isis called on its supporters to carry out copycat attacks.

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