German authorities regularly face problems with returns to the Palestinian territories. In the case of Brokstedt’s stabbing, there were also difficulties in this regard, says Federal Interior Minister Nancy Faeser. This should actually be deported.

According to Home Secretary Nancy Faeser, the Brokstedt assassin could have been deported under certain circumstances. “We tried to get hold of him, and if we had known that he was in custody, we could have listened to him and then deported him,” said the SPD politician in Berlin. “We now know that there was misinformation.”

According to Faeser, the authorities have previously tried to deport the man – and they failed. “The difficulty there seemed to be that he was stateless,” said Faeser. According to her, that would have been a process with the State of Israel and the Palestinian authorities. So far, there have only been very few returns to the Palestinian territories with Israel’s consent.

On January 25, Ibrahim A. stabbed other passengers in a regional train from Kiel to Hamburg with a knife. Two young people died and five others were injured, some seriously. Almost a week earlier, the 33-year-old had been released from custody in Hamburg.

It had previously become known that in the file that the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) created for Ibrahim A., an identity card from Syria from another person was said to have been mistakenly found. Therefore, the BAMF has meanwhile assumed that the man is a stateless Palestinian from Syria. A BAMF department head had also stated in the interior committee of the Schleswig-Holstein state parliament that Ibrahim A. himself had said after entering the country in 2014 that he came from the Gaza Strip and was stateless.

Despite a comparison with the assassin Anis Amri, the authorities in Hamburg saw no signs of a terrorist background in the case of the knife attacker von Brokstedt during his detention. Apart from the statement, there were no indications of this, said Hamburg’s State Councilor for Justice Holger Schatz in the Interior and Legal Affairs Committee of the state parliament in Kiel. The 33-year-old Ibrahim A. had no contacts in Islamist circles, had neither a Koran nor a prayer rug in the cell.