Reports say a 27-year-old mother is suspected of killing the five children before jumping in front of a train but surviving with serious injuries
The five dead children were said to be one, two, three, six and eight years old
Five children were found dead in Germany today after their mother allegedly killed them before trying to take her own life.
The bodies were discovered at an apartment building in Solingen, 20 miles from Cologne in western Germany.
According to Bild, a 27-year-old mother is suspected of killing the five youngsters before jumping in front of a train but surviving with serious injuries.
The five dead children were one, two, three, six and eight years old, while an 11-year-old was uninjured.
The youngest of the dead children was an 18-month-old girl, while their surviving 11-year-old sibling is now being looked after by relatives.
Emergency personnel were called to the house on Thursday afternoon, apparently by the children’s grandmother.
Rescuers themselves were said to be traumatised by what they found in the building, and also shocked by the state of the flat.
Stefan Weiand, a police spokesman at the house, said it was a ‘tragic situation’ and added that the mother was not yet in a fit state to be questioned.
‘We are assuming a crime was committed. How and why that happened, we cannot say,’ he told broadcaster WDR.
One report said that rescuers had tried to resuscitate the children but arrived too late to save their lives.
The mother is believed to have jumped on the tracks at the central station in Duesseldorf, 20 miles from Solingen, but survived and is now in hospital.
She allegedly took another child with her to the station, where she was rescued from between the rails on a regional S-Bahn line.
The bodies were discovered at an apartment building in Solingen, 20 miles from Cologne in western Germany
German railway operator DB said there were closures in Duesseldorf because an emergency doctor had been needed on the track.
Authorities in nearby Wuppertal are investigating the children’s deaths, with dozens of officers and a fleet of emergency vehicles outside the building.
Police say further details will be revealed later today, but how the children died is not yet known.
Jürgen Hardt, a member of the German parliament, said he had reacted in ‘horror’ when he heard the news of the children’s deaths.
‘I wish the emergency services and the police strength as they deal with the case, which will affect them deeply as well,’ he said.
Solingen was the site of a racist arson attack in 1993 in which five Turkish people were killed, leading to angry protests.
Four right-wing extremists were found guilty of setting the fire.