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03:07

Germany: 'I pretended to be dead' - Hanau shooting survivor recounts harrowing ordeal

Germany, Hanau
February 21, 2020 at 12:49 GMT +00:00 · Published

Survivor and eyewitness of the shooting perpetrated by a far-right extremist that killed nine people in Hanau recounted his shocking experience on Friday.

Piter Minnemann described how he had returned to the Arena Bar, the scene of the second shooting, on Wednesday night, to order food when the gunman appeared at the door and started shooting inside the cafe before he "came to us and he shot the first one in the head. Then he killed the second one."

Minnemann was able to survive by hiding behind the bar, with a couple of friends, and playing dead. "I was lucky. We pretended to be dead. That saved my life," he said.

One of his friends was not so lucky and "had a hole in his throat," whilst his brother died next to him. Minnemann "walked out of the cafe and looked inside the kiosk, and everyone was dead there too." He detailed how he is still struggling to come to terms with the reality of the horror, and can hardly believe it is true.

"For me it is not real. In this very second that I am talking to you I cannot believe it is real. But I know as soon as I turn around and see the photos or turn on the TV or see the families cry, I know it is real. And then tears start coming, too, and grief," he added.

A gunman opened fire outside one shisha bar in the city's Heumarkt district and drove off to a second location in the Kesselstadt district where he opened fire again, killing nine people in total and injuring several others late on Wednesday evening.

The suspect was a 43-year-old German citizen from Hanau. Together with his 72-year-old mother, he was found dead at his home in the early hours of Thursday morning.

German Interior Minister Horst Seehofer described the Hanau shooting as a "racially motivated terror attack" during a press conference in Berlin on Friday.

03:07
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Description

Survivor and eyewitness of the shooting perpetrated by a far-right extremist that killed nine people in Hanau recounted his shocking experience on Friday.

Piter Minnemann described how he had returned to the Arena Bar, the scene of the second shooting, on Wednesday night, to order food when the gunman appeared at the door and started shooting inside the cafe before he "came to us and he shot the first one in the head. Then he killed the second one."

Minnemann was able to survive by hiding behind the bar, with a couple of friends, and playing dead. "I was lucky. We pretended to be dead. That saved my life," he said.

One of his friends was not so lucky and "had a hole in his throat," whilst his brother died next to him. Minnemann "walked out of the cafe and looked inside the kiosk, and everyone was dead there too." He detailed how he is still struggling to come to terms with the reality of the horror, and can hardly believe it is true.

"For me it is not real. In this very second that I am talking to you I cannot believe it is real. But I know as soon as I turn around and see the photos or turn on the TV or see the families cry, I know it is real. And then tears start coming, too, and grief," he added.

A gunman opened fire outside one shisha bar in the city's Heumarkt district and drove off to a second location in the Kesselstadt district where he opened fire again, killing nine people in total and injuring several others late on Wednesday evening.

The suspect was a 43-year-old German citizen from Hanau. Together with his 72-year-old mother, he was found dead at his home in the early hours of Thursday morning.

German Interior Minister Horst Seehofer described the Hanau shooting as a "racially motivated terror attack" during a press conference in Berlin on Friday.

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