Gun shots before papal Mass

2011-09-24 10:44

German police said they arrested a man suspected of firing three shots from an air gun today, around a kilometre from where Pope Benedict XVI was due to hold Mass.

No one was injured in the incident and a suspect was arrested in his flat, from where the shots were fired, Eckhard Deutschmann, a local police spokesperson told AFP.

The shots were fired around two hours before the 84-year-old pontiff began his celebration of the Mass before around 30 000 people, according to reporters on the scene.

No link with the pope’s visit could be immediately established.

Security for the pope’s first visit to his native Germany has been extremely tight. Large parts of Berlin, Erfurt and Freiburg have been locked down for the trip amid a colossal police presence.

Local radio reported the shots were aimed at a security official.

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