Germany condemns weekend violence, looting in Stuttgart

Chancellor Angela Merkel and the country's top security officer condemned a weekend outbreak of violence in the southwestern city of Stuttgart in which hundreds of people attacked shops, vehicles and police officers after a stop and drug search.
According to the authorities, 25 people were arrested and 19 police officers injured in the riots on Saturday evening.
Merkel's spokesman said the scenes were "hideous and should be condemned".
"Anyone who takes part in such violent outbreaks, brutally attacks police officers and destroys and loots businesses, can in no way justify this," said Steffen Seibert on Monday.
Seibert thanked police officers across the country and said they should know that the German government and millions of people are behind you.
Interior Minister Horst Seehofer, who called for "quick and hard" punishment for those responsible, said that violence against officials and rescue workers had increased more recently. He complained that "degrading the police through words and degrading can" is as hurtful as physical violence. "
Seehofer also suggested filing a lawsuit against a leftist newspaper columnist who recently wrote derogatory about the police, but his spokesman later said officials were still investigating the legal implications of such a move. Opposition lawmakers warned that government intervention in a newspaper column could be seen as an interference with press freedom.
The unrest began after officials stopped a 17-year-old on suspicion of possession of drugs when several hundred people celebrated outside at around 11:30 p.m. Saturday, the police said. Spectators started throwing stones and bottles, and smaller groups ran through the surrounding streets and broke shop windows, according to the police.
According to the police, 40 companies were destroyed, nine of them looted and twelve police vehicles damaged before the officers got the situation under control.
The police said the violence had no obvious political motivation. You said the suspect who originally stopped was a white German citizen. Of the two dozen arrested, half had German passports and the other half were citizens of other countries.
The authorities said one of the arrested had been held pending charges and were looking for formal arrest warrants to detain another seven citizens in Germany, Croatia, Iraq, Portugal and Latvia. This includes a 16-year-old boy charged with attempted manslaughter after allegedly kicking a student who was beaten up after criticizing the riots.
Other people detained during the riots were released.

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