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Police shoot armed man wielding axe in Hamburg ahead of Euros match

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Police shoot armed man wielding axe in Hamburg ahead of Euros match

Police shoot armed man wielding axe in Hamburg ahead of Euros match

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  • A man with an axe threatened police officers in Hamburg, resulting in a serious injury.
  • The incident occurred near a fanzone for Dutch football team supporters.
  •  The suspect attempted to ignite a petrol bomb, which was then shot by police.
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Officials in Hamburg report a major operation underway in the city center after a man with an axe threatened police officers. The police shot and seriously injured the man, who is now receiving medical attention.

Media reports indicate the incident occurred near a fanzone for Dutch football team supporters. The Netherlands is set to play Poland in the city later on Sunday in the Euro 2024 tournament. An initial police statement said a man threatened officers with a pickaxe and an “incendiary device.”

Later, a Hamburg police spokesperson told the BBC that the suspect, armed with a pickaxe, attempted to ignite a petrol bomb. Officers responded with pepper spray and then shot him. The incident occurred at around 12:30 local time (10:30 GMT).

Video footage posted online shows a man wielding an axe in front of police officers before a series of suspected gunshots is heard. The police have not identified the man, and the authorities have not commented on what they believe motivated the incident.

Rory Smith, the New York Times’s chief soccer correspondent in Hamburg, said the incident occurred on the Reeperbahn, a main street and nightlife area just a few hundred yards from the Dutch fanzone.

BBC Sport journalist Gary Rose, who is also in Hamburg, said preparations for the match, scheduled to kick off at 15:00 local time, are proceeding as planned. The stadium is about five miles from the city center where the incident occurred.

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Approximately 30,000 Dutch fans and a similar number of Polish fans are in the city. A good atmosphere prevails ahead of the match, seemingly unaffected by the incident.

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