In the wake of last week's terrorist attacks in Paris, Germany's Interior Minister Thomas de Maziere has called on Germans to remain alert and report suspicious behavior even of relatives, friends and colleagues.
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The unusual appeal followed warnings of the possibility that Muslim extremists would carry out terrorist attacks in Germany itself. The tension in the country spiked with a concrete warning of a potential attack in the city of Hanover, leading authorities to cancel a soccer match scheduled for Tuesday between Germany and the Netherlands that was to be attended by German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
On Wednesday, the German newspaper Bild reported that the soccer game was cancelled due to information that terrorists were planning on detonating bombs in the stadium and planting another bomb at Hanover's central train station. The explosives were reportedly to be smuggled in using an emergency vehicle.
After receiving the intelligence information, which was passed on by French intelligence services, German authorities conducted searches of Hanover but turned up no explosives or suspects.
In his own warning to Germans to remain alert to suspicious behavior, Interior Minister De Maziere said "no one need feel embarrassed to report people's suspicious behavior," and added that it would not constitute betrayal of a "son, daughter, family, colleague or classmate but rather a sign of caring, love and brotherhood to see to it that this extremism is stopped."