German prosecutors launch probe into killing of Ukrainian soldiers

By Thomson Reuters Apr 29, 2024 | 8:08 AM

BERLIN (Reuters) – German prosecutors said on Monday that they had launched an investigation into a Russian citizen arrested on suspicion of stabbing two Ukrainian soldiers to death in southern Germany over the weekend.

The soldiers – who had been convalescing in southern Germany – were found with serious stab wounds outside a shopping centre in the Bavarian town of Murnau am See on Sunday, according to police. One of them, aged 36, died at the scene, while the other, 23, succumbed to his wounds in hospital.

A 57-year-old Russian citizen was arrested in his home shortly after the act on suspicion of murder, police said.

The prosecutor general’s office in Munich said it had since taken over the case and was not able to rule out a political motivation on the part of the alleged perpetrator.

Ukrainian consuls are clarifying information about the units in which the victims served and establishing contact with their families, the Ukrainian government said in a statement.

Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba instructed the consulate general in Munich to keep an eye on the case and remain in contact with German law enforcement, it said.

A spokesperson for the German government declined to comment on the case earlier on Monday, saying that a police investigation was ongoing.

(Reporting by Alexander Ratz, Writing by Friederike Heine, Editing by Miranda Murray)