Al-Qaeda Threatens Oktoberfest
Bavarian police have arrested two Islamic extremists in Munich, leading to an increase in security at the ongoing Oktoberfest. Flights are banned from entering the air space above the festival, and vehicles are not allowed to park.
Videos where members of al-Qaeda threaten Germans to look out if they don't withdraw from Afghanistan emerged on the internet after the German people re-elected their center-right government last week. Two Islamic extremists with links to Bekay Harrach, the person who made the threats in the videos, have now been arrested in Munich, and security levels have been raised.
Only residents can now drive in the Oktoberfest area, and nobody is allowed to park. Visitors are advised not to bring large bags to the festival, and all delivery vehicles will be searched. No planes can enter the air above Oktoberfest.
This year, Oktoberfest runs from September 19th to October 4th.
Toni Roiderer, the spokesman for the beer tent managers, said there had been no cancellations so far. "But if someone cancels their table reservations, we'll fill the tents with people who are less afraid," he told the ddp news agency.
Peter Reichl, a government spokesman, said: "We know these persons are part of Islamic extremist circles." Islamic fundamentalists oppose the consumption of alcohol and would regard the world's largest beer festival as a richly symbolic target.
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