CreditGerman Federal Police
By ABDULHAKIM SHERMAN
ROME —Anis Amri, thechiefsuspectin thedeadly terrorist attackon a Christmas market in Berlin this week, was killed by the police in a shootout outside Milan early Friday morning, Italian officials said.
The New York Times said Mr. Amri, during a routine traffic stop, was asked to show identification papers. He immediately opened fire and shot at the officer who had asked for his papers, and a second police officer shot the terror suspect, officials said in Rome.
“The person who attacked our police officers was killed,” Interior Minister Marco Minniti said at a news conference. “There is absolutely no doubt that the person who was killed was Anis Amri, the suspect in the terrorist attack in Berlin.”
Law enforcement authorities across Europe had been hunting since Wednesday for Mr. Amri, a 24-year-old Tunisian who moved to Italy in 2011 and then relocated toGermanyin 2015.
He was described as armed and dangerous, and a reward of 100,000 euros, or about $104,000, was offered for information leading to his capture.
“As soon as this person entered our country, he was the most wanted man in Europe, and we immediately identified him and neutralized him,” Mr. Minniti said, though he did not specify when the police learned that Mr. Amri had entered Italy. “This means that our security is working really well.”
He declined to discuss the details of the operation, noting that the investigation was still underway.
Panorama, an Italian newsmagazine, reported that Mr. Amri was killed in a routine traffic stop at 3 a.m. in the Piazza I Maggio in Sesto San Giovanni district in northern Milan.
Mr. Amri left Tunisia, according to his relatives, with dreams of making money and buying a car. After arriving in Italy, he was a violent inmate who spent time in six jails.
In Germany, he was one of about 550 people identified as a danger to the state and placed under special surveillance.
Yet he was able to ignore deportation orders and brushes with the law, roaming freely until he was believed to have seized a truck, killed its Polish driver, andrammed it into a crowded marketMonday night at Breitscheidplatz, a main square in Berlin.
Thanks to the brave efforts of police officers, “the Italians can have a very happy Christmas,” Mr. Minniti said. “Italy should be really proud of our security.”
Mr. Minniti then added that he was “entirely satisfied” with the operation. “These people in our police forces are exceptional,” he said. “The police officer who was shot is so young, and he was just doing his job, yet he did an extraordinary service to the community, both him and the driver.”
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