German terror group National Socialist Underground (NSU) carried out a bomb attack on Turkish-occupied Keup Strasse in Cologne 16 years ago during its 7 year-long serial murders. 22 people were injured when the nail bomb went off on June 9th 2004. This year, Henriette Reker, the mayor of Cologne sent a letter to the initiative that represents the shop owners of Keup Strasse to herald on its 16th anniversary that a monument could finally be erected to commemorate the vicious bombing.
Prominent members of Turkish community gathered on Keup Strasse in Mulheim district on Tuesday to commemorate the NSU bombing. Turkish counsel general Baris Erciyes said NSU victims’ families have gone through tough times because German police blame the family members and the Turkish community for the crimes of NSU until the terror group self-exposed in 2007. Erciyes also said the verdict in NSU trial has not satisfied the victims’ families and tarnished the image of justice in Germany.
The head of Keup Strasse Initiative, Meral Sahin said she received a letter from Cologne mayor Henriette Reker whom said the city could purchase the unused property at the street to erect a monument to commemorate the bombing. Turkish community and the shop keepers of the street have been asking for a monument for years but it has not been realized yet.
Turkish counsel general Erciyes also reiterated that a monument was important to make sure the racist crime would not happen again.
Keup street, however, has been livelier than ever since the bombing of NSU. Kuep has always been one of the most famous and attractive locations in Cologne housing several Turkish shops and restaurants.
German terror group NSU murdered 10 people between 2000 and 2007. NSU trial started in 2013 and light sentences were handed out to three people by a Munich court. Lawyers for the victim families have recently said that the NSU verdict is a dark stain on German justice system.