German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said there are multiple signs that the suspected gunman who killed nine people at two hookah bars in Hanau acted out of right-wing extremist motives and racism.
Nine people were killed and several others seriously injured in the attack, which started at one hookah bar at around 10pm local time on Wednesday, before the gunman drove to a second and continued shooting.
“There are many indications at the moment that the perpetrator acted on right-wing extremist, racist motives, out of hatred towards people of other origins, religion or appearance,” Merkel told reporters on Thursday in the wake of the gun attack.
Racism is poison, hatred is poison and this poison exists in society and it is to blame for too many crimes.
Police have not released the identity of the 43-year-old suspect, but Hesse Interior Minister Peter Beuth confirmed on Thursday that the suspect had been found dead at his home along with the body of his 72-year-old mother.
Officers reportedly traced the address after receiving witness statements about the car the gunman apparently fled in. Local media report that a letter claiming responsibility for the shootings was found at his home.
Merkel said German authorities would do everything possible to establish the motive and background to the attack. Earlier, police said they do not believe any other perpetrator was involved in the shootings.
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