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7 injured in ax attack at German train station; 1 man arrested

7 injured in ax attack at German train station; 1 man arrested
Special police forces walk in the main train station in Duesseldorf, western Germany, on Thursday after an ax attack. (David Young / Associated Press)

A man was arrested after injuring seven people with an ax at the main train station in Duesseldorf, Germany, in what appeared to be a random attack, police said Thursday.

Officers were alerted about an attack shortly before 9 p.m., prompting a large-scale police response.

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"A person, probably armed with an ax, attacked people at random," police said in a statement. Seven people were injured, three of them seriously, they said.

The suspect was arrested after jumping off an overpass near the train station, the statement said. The 36-year-old man, described as being from "the former Yugoslavia" and living in the nearby city of Wuppertal, suffered serious injuries and was being treated in a hospital.

"The suspect appears to have had psychological problems," police said.

An ax was recovered and officers were searching the area in and around the station, which was closed for the investigation. Police withdrew an earlier report that a second person had been arrested, saying later that they were working on the assumption the man had acted alone.

Authorities have heightened security measures after a series of attacks in public places in Germany over the last year.

In one attack in July, a 17-year-old Afghan asylum seeker traveling on a train near Wuerzburg injured five people with an ax and a knife before being shot dead by police. The attack was later claimed by the Islamic State group.

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UPDATES:

5:35 p.m.: This article was updated with police raising the number injured to seven.

2:15 p.m.: This article was updated with police correcting earlier reports of two arrests.

This article was originally published at 1:35 p.m.

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