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Knife Attack in Mannheim: 6 Injured, Including Anti-Islam Leader

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A knife attack in Mannheim's market square has left six people injured, including anti-Islam activist Michael Stürzenberger. The attacker has been neutralized, and investigations are ongoing.

Knife Attack in Mannheim Leaves Six Injured, Including Prominent Anti-Islam Activist

In a shocking incident in Mannheim, Germany, a man wielding a knife attacked participants at an anti-Islam rally, leaving six people injured. The attacker was later shot by police officers and is now in custody. Among the injured was Michael Stürzenberger, a leading figure in the anti-Islam organization Pax Europa.

The incident occurred on Mannheim's market square during an event organized by Pax Europa. Baden-Württemberg's Interior Minister Thomas Strobl confirmed that a police officer is fighting for his life after intervening during the attack. The attacker was shot and wounded by police and is currently under investigation. The Karlsruhe public prosecutor's office, responsible for political crimes, is leading the inquiry, though no motive has been officially determined yet.

Mannheim's mayor Christian Specht described the incident as a terrorist attack, a sentiment echoed by Chancellor Olaf Scholz who condemned the act and referred to the assailant as an 'assassin.' Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier also expressed his outrage and called for severe punishment for the perpetrator.

Michael Stürzenberger, who was injured in the face and leg, is undergoing emergency surgery but is reportedly not in life-threatening danger. Pax Europa, the organization he represents, is known for its critical stance on Islam and Islamism. The Bavarian Office for the Protection of the Constitution has noted that the group pursues Islamophobic efforts that threaten religious freedom for Muslims. Although not listed in the recent report of 2023 due to reduced activity, both Stürzenberger and the organization remain under scrutiny.

A video of the attack quickly spread online, showing the assailant stabbing multiple people and the subsequent police intervention. The police praised their officers for their 'courageous, determined, and highly professional intervention,' which prevented further casualties. The Mannheim market square, situated in the city's center, was cordoned off, and investigators are securing evidence and assessing the scene.

Authorities have yet to release information regarding the extent and severity of the injuries to the other victims. Emergency responders transported the injured to various hospitals where some underwent emergency surgery. The market square remains closed off as investigators continue to work on the scene.

The attack has caused widespread consternation. Chancellor Scholz expressed his shock, stating that 'violence is absolutely unacceptable in our democracy,' while Federal President Steinmeier condemned the act as destructive to democracy and freedom of expression.

  • The attacker managed to injure several people, including a police officer who is now in critical condition. The attacker's motive is still under investigation, but the incident has already sparked significant political and public response.
  • The market square in Mannheim, a city with a population of 300,000 in the north of Baden-Württemberg, was cordoned off following the attack. Privacy walls were erected and a nearby tram station was closed to secure the area. A rescue helicopter was also deployed for immediate medical assistance.
  • Pax Europa is an organization that does not differentiate between Islam and Islamism, attributing characteristics such as 'aggressive contempt and intolerance' to both. This has led to scrutiny by the Bavarian Office for the Protection of the Constitution, which monitors potentially unconstitutional activities.
  • The video footage of the attack has been widely circulated on social media, capturing the moment when the officer shot the attacker. This visual documentation has added a layer of urgency to the investigation and public discourse surrounding the incident.
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