Great Britain

Germany mass shooting: Gunman was eugenicist, manifesto shows

A suspected gunman who shot dead at least 10 people in a German town was a far-right eugenicist who called in a manifesto for the extermination of various Muslim-majority countries.

The 43-year-old suspect, named in local media only as Tobias R, killed himself and his 73-year-old mother at his home following the overnight terror attack at two shisha bars in Hanau, a town close to Frankfurt in the western state of Hasse.

Some of the nine victims at the bars were migrants from Turkey, officials said, while federal prosecutors said they had taken charge of the case due to indications the attack had a far-right motive.

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Turkey's ambassador to Germany said five of those killed were Turkish citizens. 

The attacker had posted a 24-page manifesto online with conspiracy theories and deeply racist views, the public prosecutor general said.

"On the suspected perpetrator's home page, he had put up video messages and a kind of manifesto that, in addition to obscure thoughts and absurd conspiracy theories, pointed to deeply racist views," Public Prosecutor General Peter Frank told reporters.

In the manifesto the suspect says he hates foreigners and non-whites, and calls for the destruction of a number of countries in North Africa, the Middle East and Central Asia. 

Peter Neumann, founder of the International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence (ICSR) at King’s College London, who analysed the German-language document, said he did not emphasise Islam, but identified attacking states largely populated by Muslims. 

The justification for killing entire populations was made in “explicitly eugenicist terms”, Prof Neumann tweeted, with the suspect claiming falsely that science showed certain races were superior.

It contains numerous allusions to antisemitic conspiracy theories, with a section dedicated to the supposed malign influence of Hollywood as well as a “shadow government” controlling the US.

He also identified as a so-called “incel”, revealing he had never been in a relationship with a woman for the last 18 years out of choice. 

In a separate video that hints at the suspect’s state of mind, he talks about secret societies controlling America, mind control and devil worship. 

“The attack carries both similarities and significant differences from the string of far-right terror attacks that have struck western countries over the last year-and-a-half,” anti-racism group Hope not Hate said in a statement. 

“The shooter released a manifesto online, and expressed clear ideas about race and immigration in line with those previous attackers.” 

Overnight, police chased a car used to leave the scene of one shooting to its owner's address, where they found the bodies of the man and his mother, Hesse interior minister Peter Beuth said.

It is believed the gunman returned home after his rampage and shot himself. Officers said there were no indications other suspects were involved in the attack.

Germany's political landscape has been polarised in recent years, with a wave of immigration and a slowing economy helping to fuel support for extremist groups at both ends of the spectrum.

In October, an antisemitic gunman opened fire outside a German synagogue on Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the Jewish year, and killed two people as he livestreamed his attack.

Authorities have banned some far-right groups endorsing violence, while Germany's post-war centrist political consensus has been undermined by growing support for the anti-immigrant Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, notably in the former-Communist eastern states.