German police have said they suspect an explosion in Berlin at around 0800 hrs local time was caused by a bomb. The device is reported to have detonated as an unidentified man was driving through the western district of Charlottenburg. It is unclear whether the attack was intended to be a suicide bombing or if the device accidentally detonated before it could reach its intended target. Police have sealed off the area of Bismarck Street where the incident took place and are urging residents to avoid public transport in the area.
Although few details have yet been released about the incident, the suspected bombing will raise fresh concerns over the threat of terrorism in Europe. The incident comes shortly after a car bombing in Ankara, Turkey on 13 March that killed 37 people and was blamed on Kurdish separatists, and the Islamic State-claimed attacks in Paris in November that left 137 people dead and led to widespread reviews of security protocols across Europe. In response to these recent incidents, police are likely to increase security in major German cities, possibly leading to an increase in checks at major transport hubs, including airports and railways, and border crossings. PGI will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates via the Risk Portal.