German police are hunting for up to seven people suspected of plotting suicide attacks on people celebrating New Year’s Eve in the city of Munich.

Some 550 police officers were deployed to hunt down the suspects and secure the city, with authorities warning that the threat remains “high”.

A spokesman for German police told the AFP news agency: “We still have many colleagues deployed. There is, as before, a high threat of terror.”

The suspects are believed to be Islamic State militants from Syria and Iraq, according to Joachim Herrman, interior minister for the state of Bavaria.

He said German authorities were tipped off by a “friendly intelligence service” – thought to be France – about an apparent attack, which would have been carried out around midnight.

The “concrete tip” indicated the group was planning a massacre involving suicide bombers targeting train stations in the Bavarian capital.

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