Two Second World War bombs defused in Germany after mass evacuation

Dortmund

Thousands of people in and around the German city of Dortmund were evacuated on Sunday while crews defused two World War II-era bombs, officials said.

Nearly 75 years after the end of the war, unexploded bombs are frequently found in Germany and disposing of them can entail large-scale evacuations as a precaution.

Last September, 15,000 people were evacuated from their homes while a 550lb device was defused in Hanover. Their homes will leave about 14 thousand inhabitants of the city.

Workers had detected anomalies during construction work, they announced on the city's official Twitter. Starting Saturday, hundreds of patients and senior citizens had been relocated from two hospitals in the area.

Two unexploded bombs weighing 250 kilogrammes (550 pounds) each, one British and the other American, were found and made safe.

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The city administration had earlier confirmed that special disposal teams had discovered two unexmploded bombs from World War II in the densely populated the Klinikviertel (clinic quarter).

Most bombings occurred in the Third Reich's heavily-industrialised Ruhr valley and Rhineland in western Germany, although it was Dresden, in the east of the country, that became a symbol of the allied bombing campaign and one of the most contested chapters of WW2. Germany's construction boom regularly prompts excavations of brownfield sites, typically preceded by mass evacuations.

Dortmund authorities said work had begun on the second detonation.

Dortmund Zoo's offer of free entry to those evacuated had been taken up by 300 residents, reported public broadcaster WDR Sunday.

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