Germany: Man Holds Hostages at Ingolstadt Town Hall
Berlin – A man is holding three people hostage at the old town hall in Ingolstadt, southern Germany, forcing Chancellor Angela Merkel to cancel a visit that had been planned for later on Monday.
Police say they believe a deputy mayor, Sepp Misslbeck, is among the hostages and the assailant is said to be armed. The police are reported to be in contact with the man. His motives are as yet unclear. Mrs Merkel had planned to hold an election rally in the Bavarian town. The man got into the building just before 09:00 local time (07:00 GMT) on Monday. The Bavarian broadcaster Bayerischer Rundfunk describes the hostage-taker as a 24-year-old homeless stalker. He is reported to have stalked a town hall employee.
The town’s mayor Alfred Lehmann, of the conservative Bavarian CSU party, is not among the hostages, police said. The hostages are said to be in deputy mayor Misslbeck’s office on the first floor and police have cordoned off the building. Mrs Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) said her visit had been cancelled in light of the hostage-taking. But there is no suggestion of a link between the two events. She is campaigning ahead of elections on 22 September. (BBC)