BOSTON (CBS) – A tractor-trailer barreled through a Christmas market in Berlin, Germany killing at least twelve people and injuring dozens more. The attack was very similar to one carried out in Nice, France in July.
The driver is in custody and a passenger inside the truck is dead. Germany’s top security official says initial evidence points to an intentional act.
The White House released a statement strongly condemning what appears to be a terrorist attack.
Police in Berlin say the truck was registered in Poland and may have been stolen from there.
Witnesses described a scene of chaos, people with broken limbs and others trapped under Christmas stands. The driver of the truck was arrested about a mile and a half from the scene.
“I saw a truck barreling in to a crowd of innocent people tonight,” said witness Shandana Durrani. “It looked like an accident. It looked like the truck jumped the curb and was going too fast and got out of control and sort of just swerved into the market.”
The crash comes less than a month after the U.S. State Department called for caution in markets amid threats from ISIS and Al Qaeda. The incident bears a frightening resemblance to July’s truck attack that took place in Nice, France that killed more than 80 people. That attack was carried out by a man from Tunisia.
“It’s very handy for the terrorists to use this,” said WBZ Security Analyst Ed Davis. “They’ve been radicalized online, they’re almost operating like, under remote control. And they’re able to use an everyday device to come in and kill people. And it’s really terrifying to people that experience it.”
A passenger in the truck also died at the scene. Massachusetts State Police are monitoring the situation in Berlin but say there is no evidence of any terror threat here.