German police `not trained for terror attack`: Union

The new head of Germany`s top police union said today that officers lacked the training to deal with a terror attack, as the country maintained a state of alert after a warning from a foreign ally.

Last Updated: Nov 23, 2010, 20:53 PM IST

Berlin: The new head of Germany`s top police union said today that officers lacked the training to deal with a terror attack, as the country maintained a state of alert after a warning from a foreign ally.

Speaking at a Police Trade Union (GdP) congress in
Berlin, Bernhard Witthaut said that Germany`s security forces
were equipped to cope with natural disasters but not an
incident like a suicide bombing.

"Normal police are trained in their daily service for
a catastrophe or an accident, evacuating buildings and the
like, but not for what to do in a terror attack," said Witthaut, who was elected GdP chairman yesterday.
He said that 9,000 police jobs had been axed in recent
years with another 9,000 still to be cut by 2019 which he said
was undermining security at a time when the government was
demanding a stronger presence on the streets.

But he dismissed calls for soldiers to be deployed
domestically to guard against a terror attack, saying that the
military had "no business on German streets".
German police beefed up their presence in crowded
public spaces such as train stations and airports last
Wednesday after Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said the
secret services had a tip of a likely attack this month.

He said the warning had come from an unnamed "foreign
partner".

PTI