Late Monday night saw devastation just a week before Christmas, when a 7-tonne truck ploughed through a Christmas market in Berlin. The devastation occurred outside the landmark Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church at Breitscheidplatz, a major public square in the inner city of Berlin. With information limited about who could have carried out such an atrocity, it is best to remember those who have lost their lives.

Questions raised over the reaction from police as they rushed to arrest a local asylum seeker from Pakistan and raided a large shelter of asylum seekers overnight.

Lack of information

The Berlin police have a lack of information as they rushed to arrest an individual and whilst the attack is reminiscent of Nice they arrested a Pakistani man, who has sought asylum, with very little information to go on. If it is confirmed that this was a terrorist attack by an asylum seeker, then it will increase the pressure on Angela Merkel and her asylum policy. However, an unknown police source has told Welt Newspaper “we have the wrong man” and “this means the situation is different. The real culprit is still armed and can commit further atrocities.”

Police have urged people to remain vigilant and to report any suspicious activity, but the individual who was arrested, was picked up about 2 kilometres from the scene.

Despite the police source saying that the individual in question was the wrong man, it is unclear whether they have released him yet. During the night time raid of the asylum shelter, it is confirmed that 4 men were questioned but not arrested.

Merkel’s reaction

Ms Merkel made a brief appearance on Tuesday morning saying that she was “horrified, shaken, and deeply sad” and that those who are behind the killings will be deeply punished “as severely as our laws demand”.

She was dressed entirely in black to commemorate the victims of this horrific act just a week before Christmas. She also stated that the attack would be particularly "repugnant" if it was carried out by an asylum seeker.

Germany’s Interior Minister, Thomas de Maizière, confirmed that the driver fled the scene, one of the 12 who have died includes the truck driver, who was found in the passenger seat and that the man arrested was not on any databases of terror suspects, who also denies being involved in the incident.

According to The Guardian ISIL have claimed responsibility for the attack, however, with no evidence to suggest that this may be true de Maizière is not giving much attention to the message.

Questions raised

There will be questions raised over how the police reacted to the attack by raiding the asylum shelter and arresting the individual of Pakistani origin. Whist the Nice attack shook France and the world, it must not be assumed that those of a specific origin have a connection in this manner. This would further fuel anti-immigration stances and increase the pressure on the likes of Angela Merkel, who is standing for another term as Chancellor.

Whilst new information slowly becomes known, we must not jump to conclusions until it is confirmed as to who carried out these attacks. This time should be spent mourning and remembering the victims of this deeply saddening attack, where a vigil is being held for the victims at the scene.