World

German left-wing militant arrested after more than 30 years on the run

Daniela Klette is one of three former Red Army Faction members whom police have been hunting for years.

Daniela Klette has been arrested (AP)
Germany Red Army Faction Daniela Klette has been arrested (AP) (AP)

A former member of the disbanded left-wing militant Red Army Faction has been arrested after more than 30 years on the run, German authorities said.

Prosecutors in the northern town of Verden confirmed the arrest of Daniela Klette, 65. The Bild daily, which cited unidentified security sources, reported that she was arrested in Berlin on Monday evening.

Klette is one of three former Red Army Faction members whom police have been seeking for years.

Klette, Ernst-Volker Staub and Burkhard Garweg have been linked to at least 12 robberies in northern Germany between 1999 and 2016. They were also wanted for attempted murder.

Authorities suspect the motive for the robberies was to get hold of money rather than anything political.

In mid-February, investigators made a new appeal for information on the trio on a popular television crime programme. They were put on Europol’s Europe’s Most Wanted list in 2020.

The Red Army Faction emerged from German student protests against the Vietnam War. The group launched a violent campaign against what members considered US imperialism and capitalist oppression of workers.

The organisation killed 34 people and injured hundreds but declared itself disbanded in 1998.