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Far-right AfD local candidate stabbed in another Mannheim attack

The area is cordoned off as police and firefighters are deployed following an incident on Mannheim's market square, Germany, Friday, May 31, 2024.
The area is cordoned off as police and firefighters are deployed following an incident on Mannheim's market square, Germany, Friday, May 31, 2024. Copyright Rene Priebe/(c) Copyright 2024, dpa (www.dpa.de). Alle Rechte vorbehalten
Copyright Rene Priebe/(c) Copyright 2024, dpa (www.dpa.de). Alle Rechte vorbehalten
By Tamsin PaternosterEuronews
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A police officer was killed in another stabbing in the city in Germany's southwest.

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Heinrich Koch, a local council candidate for the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party, was injured in an apparent knife attack in Mannheim on Tuesday night.

The Federal spokesman of the AfD party, Tino Chrupalla, posted on X that Koch was confronted as he confronted people pulling down posters in the German southwestern city of some 300,000.

"Our members and representatives are the most frequent victims of political violence and destruction. That cannot stop us," added Chrupalla.

Police in Mannheim confirmed that a police investigation is underway in connection to the incident.

In an alleged video of the incident provided by the AfD to German news agency dpa the perpetrator was a young man who was tearing down the far-right party's posters in the city's market square. The video shows a man running away from Rheinau market square with several AfD posters under his arm as Koch, who allegedly filmed the video, chases him.

Koch has sustained injuries to his ear and stomach, according to domestic outlets. He is the AfD's third-place candidate in local council elections, held on 9 June.

The attack comes only days after a 29-year-old police officer was killed in a different stabbing during an anti-Islam demonstration in the same city.

He was one of six people who were wounded when a 25-year-old man armed with a knife attacked an anti-Islam rally last Friday.

Known German far-right activist and anti-Islam critic Michael Stürzenberger was also injured while taking part in a Citizens' Movement Pax Europa (BPE) party gathering, of which Stürzenberger is a member.

The police officer succumbed to injuries on Sunday after being placed in intensive care.

The attacker, who was believed to have emigrated to Germany from Afghanistan in 2014, was shot and injured at the scene. Police have not yet provided a motive for the attack.

On X, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said that his thoughts were with the slain officer's family and that he was "deeply saddened" by the incident.

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