KEY POINTS

  • Two gunmen shot dead at least eight people in two separate shootings in the German city of Hanau
  • Five others are wounded and there are unconfirmed reports of a third shooting
  • The gunmen are at large

Eight people were shot dead and five more wounded when two unidentified gunmen opened fire on them in the German city of Hanau on Wednesday evening at about 10:00 p.m., local time.

The shootings took place at two shisha bars. One of the bars in located in Hanau's central square; the other at the western Kesselstadt neighborhood. The police headquarters in Southeast Hesse-Offenbach said three people were killed in the first shooting and five were murdered in the second. The suspects drove to the first bar and opened fire then drove to the second bar and opened fire on patrons again.

The police report stated: "As we just reported, there were gunshots in Hanau at around 10 p.m. on Wednesday evening, injuring several people. According to the latest findings, the police can now confirm that eight people were fatally injured. The search for the perpetrators is in full swing."

Five more people were wounded in the twin shootings. There are unconfirmed reports of a third shooting. The gunmen remain at large and no motive has been established.

With a population of 100,000 persons, Hanau is located in the state of Hesse, some 25 kilometers (15 miles) east of Frankfurt.

Shisha bars are establishments where patrons share shisha from a communal hookah or from one placed at each table or a bar. Shisha, or mu‘assel, is a syrupy tobacco mix containing molasses and vegetable glycerol smoked in a hookah.

Images from the scene showed large numbers of emergency vehicles and heavily armed officers sealing off the area with red and white police tape Images from the scene showed large numbers of emergency vehicles and heavily armed officers sealing off the area with red and white police tape Photo: DPA / Marijan Murat