Frankfurt centre, ECB cleared to defuse WWII bomb

FRANKFURT AM MAIN (AFP) – Thousands of residents in Frankfurt have been evacuated yesterday to allow German explosives experts to defuse a large unexploded World War II bomb found close to the European Central Bank headquarters.

The ECB building has been evacuated along with residential areas that are home to some 16,000 people within a roughly one-kilometre radius of the 500-kilogramme bomb.

A bank spokeswoman said that “we have made arrangements for our employees to be able to work from other locations if necessary,” reported the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) daily.

The US fragmentation bomb with two detonators was found on June 25 during construction work in the centre of Germany’s banking capital Frankfurt.

The ordnance clearance service determined that it spelled no immediate danger and scheduled the defusal operation for yesterday.

The evacuation zone stretches across both banks of the Main River and will force the suspension of several train services.

People leave the forbidden area near the European Central Bank in Frankfurt, Germany. – AP