Police say several people have been hurt in a stabbing in the German city of Mannheim

Police say an assailant with a knife has attacked and wounded several people in a square in the southwestern German city of Mannheim

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BERLIN (AP) — An assailant with a knife attacked and wounded several people in a central square in the southwestern German city of Mannheim on Friday, police said. Police shot the attacker, who also was hurt.

Police said the violence happened shortly after 11:30 a.m. (0930 GMT). They said that they couldn't immediately give any information on the severity of the injuries, or specify exactly how many people were hurt. The victims included a police officer.

They said in a statement that there was no longer any danger to the public. There was no official word on the motive.

A group called Pax Europa, which describes itself as an organization that informs the public about the dangers posed by the “increasing spread and influence of political Islam,” said that the attack happened on the sidelines of an event it organized. It said that Michael Stürzenberger, an anti-Islam activist who has spoken at its events. was among those wounded.

Interior Minister Nancy Faeser said that it's up to the investigation to determine a motive. She said in a statement that “if the investigation shows an Islamist motive, that would be another confirmation of the great danger from Islamist acts of violence that we have warned of.”

Chancellor Olaf Scholz posted on X that “the pictures from Mannheim are terrible” and that “violence is absolutely unacceptable in our democracy.”

The stabbings happened on the Marktplatz, a square in Mannheim’s downtown area. The city of about 300,000 people is located south of Frankfurt.

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