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Asylum-Seeker Goes on Trial in Germany over Knife Attack

Asylum-Seeker Goes on Trial in Germany over Knife Attack

Saturday, 13 January, 2018 - 09:45
Police investigators work at the crime scene after a knife attack in a supermarket in Hamburg, Germany, July 28, 2017. (Reuters)

The trial of a Palestinian asylum-seeker, charged with killing a man with a knife in a supermarket, got underway in the German city of Hamburg on Friday.

Ahmad Alhaw, 26, risks life in prison. Hearings began after he was deemed psychologically fit for trial.

Investigators found no link between him and ISIS terror group. So he has gone on trial on murder and not terror-related charges.

Alhaw took a 20-centimeter knife from the shelves of a supermarket last July, using it to kill one and wound six in the assault. He was arrested after passers-by overpowered him.

The trial is expected to last until March 2, with the six wounded invited to the hearings only from January 26.

Germany has been on high alert over the threat of a militant assault since Tunisian Anis Amri drove a truck into crowds at a Berlin Christmas market in December 2016, killing 12 and injuring 48.

Like Amri, Alhaw was to have been deported after his asylum application was rejected by authorities at the end of 2016, but the process was held up by a lack of identity documents.

The attacks have piled pressure on Chancellor Angela Merkel over her decision to allow in more than a million asylum seekers since 2015.

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