Thousands evacuated in Frankfurt as officials work to defuse WW2 bomb

Frank Bender of the Rhineland Palatinate bomb disposal service inspects a US aerial bomb in Koblenz Germany.            
    
              
     
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Police said anyone refusing to evacuate would be arrested.

Construction workers found the 4,000-pound British bomb Tuesday. In Frankfurt, some 60,000 were ordered to leave a 1-mile radius around the site where a 1.8-ton British bomb was to be disposed of Sunday.

Patients at two different hospitals, including several newborns, as well as elderly people from 10 homes had to be moved to safety on Saturday, according to police and firefighters in Frankfurt.

The authorities had threatened to use force against anyone who refused to leave after warning that the bomb is big enough to destroy an entire city block.

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A temporary evacuation centre has been set up at Frankfurt's trade fair site.

Bomb disposal experts will use a special system to try to unscrew the bomb's fuse from a safe distance.

Around 60,000 people have left their homes in the largest evacuation in a German city since the war.

More than 2,000 tonnes of live bombs and munitions are found each year in Germany, even under buildings.

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The HC 4000 bomb is believed to have been dropped by Britain's Royal Airforce in World War II.

Three police explosives experts in Goettingen were killed in 2010 while preparing to defuse a 1,000 lb (450 kg) bomb.

Some of the city's museums have offered free entry to displaced residents.

Air traffic from Frankfurt airport could also be affected and small private planes, helicopters and drones were banned from the evacuation zone.

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