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Germany tightens security for Muslim institutions after Dresden mosque bombing

Dresden police chief Horst Kretzschmar said three mosques, a Muslim social centre and a prayer room would be given protection immediately. In photo: Two policemen stand in front of the Fatih Camii Mosque on September 27, 2016 Photograph: (AFP)

Dresden, Germany Sep 27, 2016, 10.23 PM (IST)

Germany has increased police presence around Muslim institutions in Dresden after two bombs exploded in the eastern city on Monday evening.

The blasts detonanted in front mosque and at an international conference centre. No one was hurt in the incident.

"Even if we so far have no claim of responsibility, we must go on the basis that the motive was xenophobic," Horst Kretzschmar, president of Dresden police, said in a statement, Reuters reported.

Kretzschmar said three mosques, a Muslim social centre and a prayer room would be given protection immediately.

"We have now switched to crisis mode," the police chief added.

Security will also be boosted for Germany's Unity Day celebrations on Oct. 3 next week, to be attended by German President Joachim Gauck and Chancellor Angela Merkel, Deutsche Welle reported officials as saying.

AfD co-leader Frauke Petry condemned the attack on the mosque, saying: "Attacking a building in which people worship God is barbaric, whether it be a church, a mosque or a synagogue," Reuters reported.

Saxony state premier Stanislaw Tillich called the "cowardly" bombings an "attack on freedom of religion and on the values of an enlightened society" that could easily have claimed lives, AFP reported.

Dresden was the cradle of the anti-Islam PEGIDA grassroots movement whose weekly rallies attracted around 20,000 supporters at the height of its popularity at the start of 2015, Reuters said.

Following Germany's migrant influx, the city has become a hot-bed for far-right protests and hate crimes.

(Reuters)

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