- Title: German police suspend open-air rock concert on a possible attack alert
- Date: 3rd June 2017
- Summary: NUERBURG, GERMANY (JUNE 3, 2017) (REUTERS) ***WARNING CONTAINS FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY*** VARIOUS OF "ROCK AM RING" FESTIVAL WITH MAIN STAGE AFTER SUSPENSION PEOPLE AT FESTIVAL AREA NEWS CONFERENCE OF POLICE, WITH INTERIOR MINISTER OF RHINELAND-PALATINATE, ROGER LEWENTZ (GREY HAIR, GLASSES), POLICE PRESIDENT OF CITY OF KOBLENZ, WOLFGANG FROMM (WHITE SHIRT), DIRECTOR OF POLICE IN CITY OF KOBLENZ, CHRISTOPH SEMMELROGGE AND FESTIVAL PROMOTER MAREK LIEBERBERG (SUN GLASSES) (SOUNDBITE) (German) INTERIOR MINISTER OF RHINELAND-PALATINATE, ROGER LEWENTZ, SAYING: "According to our findings, an immediate danger for festival goers could not be excluded. And that is a risk that is not acceptable for us, and we needed to act. And so I was positively surprised how disciplined and organized the evacuation of the area happened." PLACARD ON WALL OF "ROCK AM RING" (SOUNDBITE) (German) POLICE PRESIDENT OF CITY OF KOBLENZ, WOLFGANG FROMM, SAYING: "Yesterday morning there was information at the police headquarters in Koblenz that at least one person of non-German origin with a background of police investigation into terrorism had access to the inner festival area. This was aggravated by the fact that the checked passes, the backstage passes, did not match with the names of the actual people who were checked." NEWS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (German) DIRECTOR OF POLICE IN CITY OF KOBLENZ, CHRISTOPH SEMMELROGGE, SAYING: "We focussed on two people in the state of Hesse, and at least one of those persons did have concrete experience in the field of terrorism, Islamic terrorism. That led to a consolidation of the findings and to re-evaluate the further concept with the Hesse officials. That led to searches of the homes in Hesse of the persons in question, the persons were at home at the time, and the police found "Rock am Ring" backstage passes on two of the people and have double-checked that with the organizers here on the ground, and realized - as Mr Fromm said just now - that the names were not registered. However, the passes were real, and we also found out which companies were responsible for them getting the passes and having access." CAMERA (SOUNDBITE) (German) OPERATIONS MANAGER GERD BERTRAM, SAYING: "In the course of the night and in the early hours of this morning we have checked the stages, the event area and the merchandising area, and have no found anything. So we have given clearance to the entire festival area." NEWS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (German) INTERIOR MINISTER OF RHINELAND-PALATINATE, ROGER LEWENTZ, SAYING: "I am very glad that after the investigation of the police we could tell the organisers today that the festival "Rock am Ring" can continue. That I think is also a decision that many of the festival goers appreciate." NEWS CONFERENCE (SOUNDBITE) (German) FESTIVAL PROMOTER MAREK LIEBERBERG, SAYING: "Because we cannot anticipate that much discipline (in rock festival fans) as we have experienced here. Therefore, my thanks goes to the visitors, to the people who stayed, because I think it will be worth it, the festival continues. At the same time my thanks go to the team of stewards, all the people of the trade, the police of course for their assistance, to everybody who has helped for to go that smoothly yesterday. So we can say: We also set a sign for our culture here. And I am very proud and full of thanks." POSTER END OF NEWS CONFERENCE
- Embargoed: 17th June 2017 11:21
- Keywords: concert rock open-air police German
- Location: NUERBURG, GERMANY
- City: NUERBURG, GERMANY
- Country: Germany
- Topics: Arts / Culture / Entertainment,Sport
- Reuters ID: LVA0016JQ3IVB
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: ==EDITORS PLEASE NOTE: AUDIO QUALITY AS INCOMING==
German police suspended an open-air weekend concert at Nuerburgring race track on Friday (June 2) due to a possible terrorist threat.
"According to our findings, an immediate danger for festival goers could not be excluded," said the Interior Minister of Rhineland-Palatinate, Roger Lewentz. "And that is a risk that is not acceptable for us, and we needed to act."
But after intensive searches of the whole festival area, the open-air weekend "Rock am Ring" concert will resume on Saturday (June 3), the organisers said.
The suicide bombing at a pop concert in Manchester, UK, on May 22 led to changes in the security planning for the German concert and the number of security officials was increased substantially to 1,200, the police said.
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