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WWII bomb sparks mass evacuation in Frankfurt

An 1,100-pound World War II bomb will be defused in Frankfurt on Sunday, July 7, 2019. Parts of the city's east end on both banks of the Main River, including the European Central Bank, seen here at center, will be evacuated.

MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES

By MARCUS KLOECKNER | STARS AND STRIPES Published: July 3, 2019

KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany — More than 16,500 people have been ordered to evacuate a densely populated part of Frankfurt this weekend to allow an 1,100-pound, World War II-era bomb found on a construction site to be defused, officials said Wednesday.

Residents of the area bordered by Offenbacher Landstrasse, Haburerallee, Langenstrasse and Osthafen have been asked to leave their homes by 8 a.m. Sunday.

The evacuation zone includes the popular Hafenpark, on the banks of the Main River, and Frankfurt landmarks such as the European Central Bank and the Osthafenbruecke spanning the river. The Frankfurt Zoo will remain closed all day Sunday, officials said.

The U.S. Consulate General in Frankfurt in an email advisory urged “U.S. citizens in the area to comply with official directions and avoid the area during the ordnance disposal.”

“The German authorities have a great deal of experience dealing with unexploded ordnance, and this evacuation is a necessary precaution but should not be a cause for alarm,” the advisory said.

A gathering place for evacuees will be open from 7 a.m. Sunday at 16 Alfred-Brehme-Platz, near Frankfurt Zoo, city officials said. Evacuees will also have free entrance to the city’s museums, Frankfurt Mayor Peter Feldmann said in a statement.

The bomb, which was found last week, has two detonators, local media have reported.

An information hotline — 069-212-111 — run by the Frankfurt fire department will be operated for at least 10 hours a day until the bomb has been defused.

kloeckner.marcus@stripes.com
 

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