Germany van attack: Police in Muenster say 'no clues' for a motive

Ambulances stand in downtown Muenster Germany Saturday April

Ambulances stand in downtown Muenster Germany Saturday April

Prosecutors said he had faced allegations of threats, property damage and fraud in 2015 and 2016, all of which were dropped.

A top German security official said there was no indication of an Islamic extremist motive but officials were investigating all possibilities in the deadly crash that took place at 3:27 p.m. on a warm spring day.

The van injured 20 people, six seriously, after it ran into a group of outdoor tables at a restaurant, North Rhine-Westphalia police spokesman Andreas Bode told reporters.

Muenster police president Hajo Kuhlisch said the man had four apartments and several cars, all of which were searched by police.

German officials lay flowers at a fountain in Muenster after the attack.

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But authorities could not yet determine the exact motive for the attack.

He didn't elaborate on how many Dutch were injured or how serious those injuries were.

As per witnesses, the people were seen running all over moments after the attack.

Chancellor Angela Merkel said in a statement she was "deeply shaken" by the incident.

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The premier of the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, Armin Laschet, was also present, and said that Saturday had been "a disgusting, tragic day for the people of Münster".

He said, "People are calm, but really shocked", adding that people were scared and disbelieving that such an attack could happen in Muenster. What makes this story take a freaky turn is that the driver of the vehicle shot and killed himself inside it.

"According to the current state of the investigation, the driver is probably a 48-year-old man from Muenster", said Chief Prosecutor of Muenster Martin Botzenhardt in the statement.

The German news agency dpa is quoting police as saying that that the driver who crashed his van into a crowd in the western German city of Muenster had no accomplices. "The investigations are being led under high pressure in all possible directions".

Police also said they found a suspicious object in the van that they were examining to see if it was risky.

The motivation of the attack remained unclear so far, while some German media reported that the perpetrator could be psychologically disordered.

Munster is a popular tourist destination with 300,000 inhabitants, known for its medieval old town, which was rebuilt after massive destruction during the Second World War.

The 48-year-old had driven his van into a crowd Saturday afternoon in the historical city center of Muenster.

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