National Security

Berlin Attack Suspect Was A Known Radical, Under Surveillance And Tried To Buy A Gun

REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch

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Russ Read Pentagon/Foreign Policy Reporter

The man suspected of running over a crowd of people at a German Christmas market was a known radical who was under surveillance from Germany authorities.

Anis Amri, a 24-year-old Tunisian national, was under covert surveillance by German authorities for several months this year before allegedly engaging in his truck attack which killed 12 and injured 48. German police are offering a 100,000 euro reward ($104,000) for information on Amri’s whereabouts.

“If you see this person that we are seeking, inform the police. Please do not put yourself in danger because this person could be violent and armed!” said German police in a notice.

Amri was known to have had contact with radical Islamic groups, according to a state minister. He was arrested attempting to enter Italy with fake documents in August. Amri was one of over a million refugees seeking asylum in Germany, but had his request denied resulting in a failed deportation. Police became aware of Amri after he tried to buy a gun. He is believed to have used six aliases.

German police carried out raids in North Rhine-Westphalia region Tuesday night in search of Amri.

The Islamic State took credit for the Berlin attack, but failed to name Amri as the man responsible. ISIS’s Amaq News agency noted the attack was carried out by a “soldier of the Islamic State.”

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