Munich ups security, bans backpacks from Oktoberfest

  • AP, Berlin
  • Updated: Aug 17, 2016 15:58 IST
File photo from Germany’s annual Oktoberfest. Backpacks have been banned at the event this year due to security concerns. (AFP)

Munich city officials say they’re banning backpacks from this year’s Oktoberfest and plan to erect a fence in an effort to increase security after recent attacks rattled Germany.

Deputy mayor Josef Schmid said Wednesday that bags of more than 3 liters (0.8 gallons) in capacity won’t be allowed into the annual beer celebration, which runs September 17-October 3. The number of security staff also will be increased.

Schmid said a 350-meter fence will be put up to secure a previously open entrance to the festival grounds.

In July, Bavaria was shaken by three attacks in a week. Two were carried out by asylum-seekers and claimed by the Islamic State group. Only the attackers were killed. Separately, a teenager killed nine people in a shooting rampage in Munich.

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