Syrian Asylum Seeker Blows Himself Up in Germany

Syrian Asylum Seeker Blows Himself Up in GermanySyrian Asylum Seeker Blows Himself Up in Germany

A 27-year-old Syrian man died when a bomb he was carrying in a rucksack went off outside a music festival in Germany and wounded 12 people, an official said.

Police said in a statement early Monday morning that "a man, according to our current knowledge the perpetrator, died" in the blast on Sunday night. Officials are investigating any terrorist links, DW reports.

The man, according to Bavarian Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann, had been denied entry to the music festival as he did not have a ticket.

The minister said authorities were still investigating if the blast was an act of terrorism. "We can't rule it out," Herrmann said.

Ansbach Mayor Carda Seidel said the explosion was near an entrance to the festival. Around 2,500 people were attending the event, which was canceled after the blast was heard at about 10 p.m. local time.

People were evacuated from the area as the old city was cordoned off and rescue vehicles assembled. There were 200 police on duty and a further 350 members of rescue teams were brought in.

A police spokeswoman said at a press conference that the man is believed to have acted alone.

- Asylum Seeker

The suspect, identified as a 27-year-old Syrian asylum seeker, arrived in Germany two years ago. His application for asylum was rejected last year but he had been allowed to remain temporarily in Germany and was living in an apartment in the town. He had twice before tried to commit suicide and received psychiatric care.

Speaking at a press conference, Herrmann said it was "outrageous" that someone would abuse the asylum system and added that everything would be done to prevent this kind of behavior.

A spokesman for the Ansbach prosecutor's office said the attacker's motive wasn't clear.

The minister told DPA news agency he agreed that it was too early to say if there was any link with the self-styled Islamic State terrorist group, but added that could not to be ruled out.

- Blast Follows Munich attack

Belgium's Prime Minister Chales Michel called the bomb blast "an act of hate" and called for unity on Twitter.

The blast in Ansbach was Germany's fourth violent incident in a week. It occurred just after Friday night's gun attack in Munich, which left nine people dead.

There were services held throughout Germany on Sunday in memory of the victims.

Also Sunday, a 21-year-old male refugee from Syria known to authorities for previous acts of violence killed one woman and injured five more people in the city of Reutlingen in southwest Germany.

Last Monday, a man armed with an ax attacked travelers on a train near Würzburg. Five people were injured in that attack.