16 Jan, 2021 18:31
Parts of Frankfurt Airport were evacuated and closed off to the public as police conducted an operation, apparently triggered by an abandoned piece of luggage, leading to online speculation of a bomb or gun threat.
Frankfurt Airport’s Terminal 1, along with its attached regional train station, was closed on Saturday evening, as the airport’s police service launched an otherwise undescribed “operation.”
State and federal police were involved in the operation, and the airport police wrote on Twitter that one piece of abandoned luggage had been investigated and found to be safe.
Little else is known about the operation, and as crowds left the airport, rumors of a bomb or gun threat did the rounds on social media.
@EmiratesSupport there is a mass evacuation at frankfurt Airport because of a gun threat. What does this mean for travelers? Will flights be delayed? Refunded? Will travelers get a hotel overnight? I was planning to fly to Dubai at 8:30 pic.twitter.com/ksp3QyWgox— Cassandra Beyer (@cassi_xo_) January 16, 2021
One video which quickly circulated online appears to show a police officer pointing a gun at somebody lying on the ground inside the terminal. Airport authorities cautioned against speculation, however, and urged the public not to share videos of the incident.
Police warned passengers to follow the instructions of airport security, while airport authorities warned travelers of potential delays.
In a tweet posted at 7pm GMT, airport police said the operation had ended and blocked off areas were gradually being reopened.
Frankfurt Airport is the fourth busiest in Europe by passenger numbers, and the busiest by cargo traffic. A bombing at the airport in 1985 killed three people and injured more than 70, with investigators pinning the blame on Palestinian terrorists.
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