After failing to get inside a synagogue where more than 80 people were attending Yom Kippur services in Halle, Germany, a heavily armed gunman shot two people dead, left explosives outside the synagogue, and threw a hand-grenade into a nearby Jewish cemetery before being captured by police.
The suspect was identified as Steven Balliet, 27. Dressed in military fatigues and wearing a head-mounted camera and microphone, the gunman live-streamed the attack along with an anti-Semitic and anti-immigrant diatribe.
Jewish community member Max Privorozki told German news magazine Der Spiegel that a camera at the entrance of the synagogue showed a person trying to break into the building.
”The assailant shot several times at the door and also threw several Molotov cocktails or grenades to force his way in,” said Privorozki. ”But the door remained closed – G‑d protected us. The whole thing lasted perhaps five to 10 minutes.” After failing to enter the synagogue as the terrified congregation barricaded themselves inside, witnesses said the gunman shot a woman dead in the street.
The shooter then drove to a kebab shop close to the synagogue where he shot one man dead. He then drove to a nearby Jewish cemetery where he threw a grenade that left a number of people injured.
The attack brought widespread condemnation from around Germany. The European Parliament held a moment of silence at the start of its session Wednesday to mark the attack. Security measures around synagogues and Jewish cemeteries across the country were increased after the shooting.
Wednesday’s shooting in the eastern German city of Halle outside of a synagogue was livestreamed on Amazon’s Twitch services, the company confirmed to CNBC – The video was 35 min long.