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‘Malicious and targeted’ sabotage halts rail traffic in northern Germany

Two cables that were essential to the railway network were intentionally cut. This caused a three-hour stop in all rail traffic in northern Germany. Authorities suspect that this was sabotage but have yet to identify the culprit.

Nancy Faeser (Interior Minister) stated that the federal police are investigating the incident. She added that it was unclear what the motive was.

Alarm bells rang after NATO and EU stressed last month the importance of protecting critical infrastructure in response to acts of sabotage against Nord Stream’s gas pipelines.

Volker Wissing, Transport Minister, stated that it was obvious that the attack was malicious and targeted.


Security sources say there could be many reasons for the attack. These could range from simple cable theft to targeted attacks.

Omid Nouripour, leader of the Greens party that is part of Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s federal coalition, said that anyone attacking the country’s critical infrastructure would face a “decisive response”.

On Twitter, he wrote: “We won’t be intimidated.”



Deutsche Bahn stated in a statement that it had been forced to suspend North rail traffic this morning by the sabotage cables, which are vital for rail traffic.

Deutsche Bahn (DB) previously blamed the disruption to its network on a technical problem with radio communications. Spiegel magazine reported that the communication network went down at 6:40 AM (0440 GMT). DB tweeted at 11 :06 a.m. to inform the public that traffic had been restored, but warned of delays and cancellations.

There were delays in rail services between Hamburg, Schlewsig-Holstein, and Lower Saxony as a result of the disruption. This affected international rail travel to Denmark and the Netherlands.

They arrived days before a Lower Saxony state elections, where Scholz’s Social Democrats will remain in power. According to polls the Greens have had their vote share double.

Due to many cancellations and delays on departure boards, the queues quickly grew at major stations like Berlin or Hanover.

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