December 9, 2022

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Act of sabotage shuts down parts of Germany's rail system: NPR

Act of sabotage shuts down parts of Germany’s rail system: NPR

Rail passengers wait for a train on a platform at Berlin’s main train station on Saturday after a major disruption to the German rail network.

John McDougall/AFP via Getty Images


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John McDougall/AFP via Getty Images

Rail passengers wait for a train on a platform at Berlin’s main train station on Saturday after a major disruption to the German rail network.

John McDougall/AFP via Getty Images

BERLIN – German authorities said a malicious and targeted act of sabotage caused all railways in northern Germany to stop for three hours on Saturday morning.

German Interior Minister Nancy Wieser said that vital cables of the country’s railway network were intentionally cut in two places, causing a sudden stop of all rail traffic, whether for passengers or goods, in the northern part of the country.

Transport Minister Volker Wessing said the damaged cables were “essential to the safe handling of rail traffic”. He said the German Federal Police was investigating the incident.

And the German news agency (dpa) reported that the federal police said that the crime scene took place in a suburb of Berlin and in the western state of North Rhine-Westphalia.

“We can’t say anything today either about the background or the perpetrators of this act,” Wesing said. “The investigation should come to that.”

While the motive for the incident was not clear, it came a day before state elections in the German state of Lower Saxony as German Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s Social Democratic Party is on the right track to retain power and the Green Party is seen as doubling its share in Lower Saxony. . vote.

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The disruption caused concern in the wake of last month’s sabotage that tore apart two major natural gas pipelines running from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea, an incident that prompted NATO and the European Union to stress the need to better protect critical infrastructure.

Material from The Associated Press has been included in this report.