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'Pistol jammed' in Frankfurt attack

The pistol used by the suspect in the killing of two US airmen at Frankfurt Airport jammed during the attack, preventing further deaths, German investigators said.

Prosecutor Rainer Griesbaum said Arid Uka confessed he went to Frankfurt Airport on Wednesday specifically to kill Americans "as revenge for the US mission in Afghanistan".

He said Uka shot one airman in the back of the head outside the bus, then ran on board and shot the driver in the head, killing both.

After shooting and injuring two more airmen he pointed the pistol at the head of a third and pulled the trigger twice, but the weapon jammed.

Uka then fled and his would-be victim gave chase and caught him in the airport terminal.

The US Air Force named the victims as 25-year-old Senior Airman Nicholas Alden of South Carolina, and Airman 1st Class Zachary Cuddeback of Virginia.

Senior Airman Alden was assigned to the 48th Security Forces Squadron at RAF Lakenheath in Suffolk and Airman Cuddeback, who was driving the bus, was with the 86th Vehicle Readiness Squadron at Ramstein Air Base in Germany.

A judge in Karlsruhe ordered Uka to be held in prison on two counts of murder and three counts of attempted murder.

German investigators said the indications were that Uka turned only recently to extremism. They said that he had contact with other radicals through social networking sites and elsewhere, but it appears he was not part of a terrorist organisation.

Meanwhile, it emerged that Arid Uka grew up in a well-kept immigrant neighbourhood in Frankfurt as the son of a relatively prosperous, but not particularly religious family of ethnic Albanians from Kosovo - a group notable more for their pro-American outlook than mosque attendance.

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