Anis Amri, the man believed to be behind the Christmas market in Berlin was killed in a shootout in Milan, Italy’s Interior Minister Marco Minniti said at a press conference in Rome.
Italy’s Interior Minister Marco Minniti said during a press conference that Anis Amri was stopped on foot by police patrols at around 3 a.m. during a routine check in the Sesto San Giovanni neighborhood.
Italian police say that when stopped, Amri – who was walking by himself after arriving from France – pulled a 22 caliber gun from his backpack, shouted “God is greatest” in Arabic and opened fire, injuring an officer. A second policeman with only nine months’ service returned fire, killing him, they add.
“Without any doubt the person killed is Anis Amri, the man suspected in the Berlin terrorist attack,” Minniti said.
— BBC Breaking News (@BBCBreaking) December 23, 2016
One police officer was injured, but his injuries are not life-threatening, according to tweets from the police.
Below is a scene from Milan following Amri’s deadly shootout with police:
German newspapers have been quick to report the news about the killing of Ansi Amri in Milan. The tabloid Bild says: It’s over! Terror suspect Anis Amri shot dead in Milan.
Earlier on Friday, Italian authorities said Amri was killed in a shootout with police in Milan on Thursday night. A short video posted on the website of Italian magazine Panorama suggested the shooting happened before dawn, with police gathered around a cordoned-off area in the dark.
— rbb|24 (@rbb24) December 22, 2016
As some commentators note, before being shot dead, Anis Amri left Berlin for France, and then Milan, having started in Italy, which may sound the death knell for EU freedom of movement.
Before being shot dead, Anis Amri left #Berlin for France, and then Milan – having started in Italy. Death knell for EU freedom of movement.
— Tom Newton Dunn (@tnewtondunn) December 23, 2016
Conflicting news reports previously suggested the opposite. The German Police claimed that the suspect was hiding in Berlin. On Thursday, RBB released CCTV footage showing him at a local mosque one day after the attack. The police said Amri was injured, and therefore would not risk travelling too far.
German federal police had issued a rare international wanted notice for Mr. Amri—who arrived in Germany last year after time in an Italian prison—and offered a €100,000 ($104,000) reward, warning that he could be armed and dangerous. German authorities have come under criticism over accusations they failed to stop Mr. Amri, a 24-year-old asylum seeker, despite being aware of his radicalization.
As the WSJ adds, since the Monday attack, German security and judicial officials have said they had known about the potential risks he posed for about a year, had put him under surveillance and even detained him briefly, but failed to deport him and later lost track of him. The extent of authorities’ prior knowledge and growing concern about the danger Mr. Amri posed was made even more apparent on Thursday when a senior U.S. official said Germany had notified the U.S. about him. U.S. authorities then added his name to a terrorism watch list.
German officials in November provided more information and U.S. officials decided to put Mr. Amri’s name on a no-fly list, an indication that they believed he posed a more significant threat than they previously thought, the official said.
With Amri’s permanent silencing, any chance of a prompt discovery what the alleged killer’s motives and connections, has been taken away.