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Police and firefighters injured after yobs pelt fireworks

New Year's Eve: Sadiq Khan pleased fireworks are back in London

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Police officers and firefighters in Germany were pelted with fireworks in multiple incidents on New Year’s Even, with several injuries, prompting condemnation from the country’s Government. People across Germany on Saturday resumed their tradition of setting off large numbers of fireworks in public places to see in the new year.

For the last two years, sales of fireworks were banned in Germany as part of efforts to avoid overloading hospitals and discourage large public gatherings during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Celebrations were accompanied by a large number of cases in which emergency officials were assailed with fireworks.

In Berlin, the fire service counted at least 38 such attacks and said 15 officers were injured. Police said they had 18 injured officers.

Berlin Mayor Franziska Giffey said: “This scale of readiness to use violence and destruction damages our city.”

She tweeted that her administration will discuss expanding the number of areas in which fireworks are banned.

German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser, who thanked police for intervening with more than 100 arrests in Berlin alone, said that “the perpetrators must now feel the legal consequences clearly”. 

Government spokeswoman Christiane Hoffmann said Chancellor Olaf Scholz and his administration “of course condemn in the strongest terms these, in some cases, massive assaults.”

(More to follow)

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