In the German town of Hanau near Frankfurt, where right-wing extremist shot and killed nine visitors to hookah, there is anger, fear and grief. DW reporting from the scene of the tragedy.
Melissa Kaynak (Melissa Kaynak) stands on the street in the centre of Hanau and looks at cordoned off by police tape Midnight hookah, located on the opposite side. The street gradually filled with journalists and passers-by. At the corner people light candles and lay flowers. In a typically lively eateries and gambling houses in this day unusually quiet. The night before, a right-wing extremist shot and killed here nine people and wounded five people.
Immediately after the appearance of news about crime Melissa, a social worker of Turkish origin – went to Midnight hookah to look for his brother, who sometimes went there. “I couldn’t get a hold of him and started to worry,” says the woman. On the street full of police cars and ambulances, she comforted the girl who was in shock, and prayed together with other eyewitnesses of the tragedy.
All of the victims of the attacks have migratory roots
On Wednesday evening, February 19, at Midnight hookah rushed the man and opened fire on the visitors. The result was killed three people. The assailant fled, and after a while appeared in the hookah in a different area of the city – Kesselstadt, located five minutes from the first crime scene. A man entered the premises and opened indiscriminate firing, killing five people. Another victim died several hours later from his injuries.
A few hours later the police announced that the alleged killer of 43-year-old German Tobias B. – found dead in his apartment, and that beside him is the body of a 72-year-old woman, his mother. Investigators believe that after the crime he shot his mother and then killed himself.
As reported in the Federal Prosecutor’s office of Germany, the perpetrator was guided by right-wing extremist motives. According to police, all nine of the victims were migratory roots. The victims were citizens of Germany, Bulgaria, Turkey, Romania, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Afghanistan.
“We should not be afraid “
Melissa Kaynak furious. “It was a racist attack against Muslims, against foreigners. Killed innocent people,” – says the woman. Of course, many are now scared, she says. “First it happened in Halle (October 2019 neo-Nazis attempted to attack a synagogue in Halle, but it was prevented by a strong door. -.), and now and here. I want us not talking to each other, and each other, and explained to the children and young people what is racism – regardless of whether we are talking about anti-Semitism, colour, religion, culture or origin.”
To the place of tragedy every minute, comes more people. And here comes the Deputy head of the Kurdish community in Germany Tanriverdi Mehmet (Mehmet Tanriverdi): he slowly approaches the scene with a bouquet of roses in his hands. Among the dead were a few of Kurds in General in Hanau is home to about 5,000 representatives of this people.
“We can’t feel safe,” says Tanriverdi. Xenophobes exist in every city, so this can happen anywhere, especially after the terrorist attack in Halle, stressed the representative of the Kurdish community. However, he was confident that the people must continue to live a normal life. “We should not be afraid. We need to take a strong stand against right-wing extremism and come out to protest on the streets. Such shares are held in cities throughout Germany, and it’s very good,” concludes Mehmet Tanriverdi.
“Racism is a poison”
Suddenly, the crowd gathered around a hookah, comes in motion. On the scene arrives the Minister of internal Affairs of Germany Horst Seehofer (Horst Seehofer). Together with the Minister of justice Christine Lambrecht (Lambrecht Christine) and the Prime Minister of Hesse Volker bouffier (Volker Bouffier), he holds to a tree near the hookah flowers and wreaths.
The authorities will do everything in order to find out the backstory of this crime and draw the appropriate conclusions, assures Seehofer. He also repeats the words of German Chancellor Angela Merkel (Angela Merkel) that racism is a poison, and stresses that the right-wing radicals, it is necessary to give a decisive rebuff.
Surveillance cameras and locked doors is a hookah?
Watch 19-year-old student Aise Tech (Ayse Tek) 27-year-old Mehmet Tapan (Topan Mehmet). Young people frequented hookah and only by chance was not there at the time of the crime. On Wednesday evening Aisa at the last moment changed his mind and decided not to go there and Mehmet was last in this place on Tuesday – the day before the tragic events. “On Wednesday evening I sat at home and played Playstation. Suddenly I received a message from a friend in WhatsApp that someone was shot. For me it was a shock. I went to the hookah, just the day before,” the young man says.
Answering the question about the motives of the alleged offender, Aise Tech notes, that doesn’t always feel in Hanau in security. She was born in Germany, but her ancestors came here from Albania.
“I look like a foreigner. I have black hair, dark eyes and a slight accent. But what am I to do?” she wonders. Both young people have the impression that in recent times the xenophobia in Germany has increased substantially.”Here was much worse. Sometimes you can hear phrases such as “go to his home,” says Ayse.
After the incident, Ayse and Mehmet are afraid to go to bars. “In a hookah needs to be cameras, and the doors should always be locked up,” – said the girl. In addition to the security measures it also wants changes occurred in German society.
In the meantime, the list of German cities, the names that will be forever linked to killings motivated by xenophobia, now added another settlement: Hanau.