According to the investigators’ initial findings, the explosion at the Left Party office in Oberhausen was actually an attack with a homemade explosive device. Who put it there?

After the explosion at a party office of the left in Oberhausen (North Rhine-Westphalia), the police found evidence of a homemade explosive device, according to information from the German Press Agency.

Investigators said that a so-called “unconventional explosive and incendiary device” (USBV) could be responsible – built, among other things, with “lightning explosives”, such as those found in fireworks. There are no indications of possible perpetrators. At around 3:20 a.m., the explosion destroyed the windows of the party office and neighboring shops, among other things.

Attack from the right?

According to a written statement, Yusuf Karacelik, leader of the Left Party in Oberhausen, said: “We are assuming a targeted attack from the right.” Karacelik spoke to the dpa of a “right-wing terrorist attack”. The Federal Chair of the Left, Janine Wissler, and North Rhine-Westphalia party leader Jules El-Khatib also suspect, in their own words, a right-wing extremist background.

The investigators are also pursuing other possible leads. Several members of the left from Oberhausen took part in a demonstration in Berlin at the weekend, which was directed against Germany’s rearmament because of the Ukraine war. Karacelik confirmed to the dpa that he had been questioned by the police. He emphasized: “It was not a pro-Russian demo, but a peace demo.” It is therefore wrong for the police to investigate in this direction – they should rather look for the perpetrators in the right-wing scene.

Investigations in all directions

A police spokeswoman emphasized that investigations are being carried out in all directions. Because a politically motivated act cannot be ruled out, the Essen police department is investigating together with the Duisburg public prosecutor’s office. Experts from the State Criminal Police Office were also on site.

In addition to the party’s office on Friedensplatz in Oberhausen, a hairdresser’s shop and a travel agency were also badly damaged by the explosion. Windows shattered, interior fittings were partly destroyed. “The property damage is significant,” said the police spokeswoman. Investigators are now looking for witnesses.

The left called for a “rally against right-wing terror” at the crime scene in Oberhausen, which the police said about 250 people came to in the evening. The demo was peaceful. Slogans such as “All together against fascism”, “Oppose right-wing violence” and “Against intellectual arsonists” were on banners.