A US investigation unit has revealed that a collection of fire arms were stolen from the Panzer Kaserne Army base near Stuttgart in Germany. Special agents from the US Army Criminal Investigation Command (CID) expressed concern that the weapons could find their way into the wrong hands or could be sold on the black market.
Weapons often tend to get misplaced on the base and though the Army did not confirm when the arms went missing, it indicated the theft occurred a few weeks back. It was not made public until the investigation confirmed that they had been robbed.
"Several semi-automatic pistols, one small-calibre automatic rifle and a shotgun were among the items taken," said Chris Grey, a spokesman for the CID.
"We are looking at all possibilities as the investigation continues, but at this point in the investigation it does not appear that an outside entity stole the firearms and equipment or breached the fence line, but we have not completely ruled it out," he added.
Due to the tense situation in Germany, with numerous attacks occurring on a regular basis (many being Isis-related), finding these stolen arms is of utmost importance. "Due to the ongoing investigation, we will not be releasing any additional information or any specifics on the items stolen at this time to protect the integrity of the investigative process," said Ray Johnson, a spokesman for the Army's Installation Management Command-Europe.
A German Iranian teenager opened fire at civilians in Munich on 22 July, followed a day later by a suicide bombing at a music festival in Ansbach. On 18 July another teen refugee attacked tourists on a Wurzburg train in the name of the Islamic State.
Despite concern that the stolen guns could be used to plan future attacks, Peter Schulze, Professor of International Relations at the University of Gottingen, told RT that the theft did not need to be over played. "It was only a few weapons, and no indications it was an outside source," he said. "Of course this will not contribute to a more relaxed atmosphere among the German people, as it adds fire to the existing angst about their use in a potential terrorist attack."
US military investigators have offered a $10,000 (£7,561) reward to anyone with information that leads to the recovery of the weapons.