German police knew that one of the Munich attackers then lived in Berlin, says report


The Suddeutsche Zeitung daily has reported that the German police was aware that one of the Palestinians who took Israeli athletes hostage during the 1972 Munich Olympics lived in Berlin for several years following the attack.

Citing a report in Munich police archives, the German daily said that one of the three Palestinians who was released then lived for years in Berlin.

It claims that in order to avoid any more operations by Palestinian militants on its territory, West Germany facilitated the release of the three hostage-takers.

After storming the Israeli team’s flat at the Olympic village, eight gunmen of the Palestinian militant group Black September shot dead two people fifty years ago.

The new report reveals that the West German police responded with a bungled rescue operation in which all nine hostages were killed.

When gunmen hijacked a Lufthansa plane on October 29 in 1972, the three remaining hostage-takers were released in exchange for them.

Israel subsequently launched the operation “Wrath of God” to hunt down the leaders of Black September after being incensed by the chain of events.

The BKA federal police had told the Munich police that the Palestinian in question was living in West Berlin and that he went to East Berlin almost daily.

Germany sought “forgiveness” from families of the Israeli victims as it marked the 50th anniversary of the attack this September.

(With inputs from agencies)

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