Security has been stepped up in Germany amid warnings that al Qaeda could strike around the time of Sunday’s federal election.
Extra police are on patrol in train stations and airports. Authorities are taking no chances after videos from Osama bin Laden’s group threatened Germany over its troop deployment in Afghanistan.
The US State Department says Americans should be aware of the threat if they are travelling to Germany, urging them to keep a “low profile”.
While conservative Angela Merkel’s policies may be the focus of militant anger, most of her political rivals also want a German military presence on Afghan soil, for now. Only the far-left “Linke” Party supports an immediate pullout of 4,200 German troops.
Preparations are well underway for this weekend’s vote in Germany, which unlike other European countries such as Britain or Spain has not experienced a major attack on home soil in recent years.
Final opinion polls indicate Chancellor Merkel looks on track to win a second term.