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13,000 evacuated in Frankfurt as WWII bomb is defused

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Nearly 13,000 residents were evacuated in Frankfurt on Sunday as experts defused an unexploded World War II bomb, local emergency services said.

The 500-kilogram (1,100-pound) British bomb had been found on a construction site in Germany’s financial capital on Thursday, the emergency services said.

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A 700-meter (half-mile) evacuation radius was set up in the west of the city center in an area that included a number of old people’s homes, heating and internet infrastructure and facilities of the Deutsche Bahn national rail operator.

The work was expected to continue into the evening because of coronavirus restrictions, the authorities said.

Some 75 years after the war, Germany remains littered with unexploded ordnance, often uncovered during construction work.

Earlier this year, experts defused seven World War II bombs found on the future location of Tesla’s first European factory, just outside Berlin.

A police boat patrols on the river Main near the European Central Bank, background as 16 000 people are evacuated prior to the defusing of a WWII bomb in Frankfurt, Germany, Sunday, July 7, 2019. (File photo: AP)
A police boat patrols on the river Main near the European Central Bank, background as 16 000 people are evacuated prior to the defusing of a WWII bomb in Frankfurt, Germany, Sunday, July 7, 2019. (File photo: AP)

Sizeable bombs have also been defused in Cologne and Dortmund this year.

In 2017, the discovery of a 1.4-ton bomb in Frankfurt prompted the evacuation of 65,000 people -- the largest such operation since the end of the war in Europe in 1945.

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