BERLIN — Berlin police removed thousands of people from a central area of the German capital Friday and shut down the main train station as a precaution while they defused and removed an unexploded World War II bomb found during recent construction work.
Some 10,000 residents and workers were forced to leave an area of about a square mile, including the train station, while bomb experts defused the 1,100-pound British bomb dropped during the war.
Trains were prevented from stopping at the busy station from 10 a.m., and traffic was shut down at 11:30 a.m. before experts began their work, German rail operator Deutsche Bahn said. Some 300,000 travelers use the station daily.
Bomb disposal experts were able to successfully remove the detonator just after 1 p.m. and destroy it in a small controlled explosion.
The evacuation area, a circle around the construction site north of the train station where the bomb was discovered during digging, also included a hospital and the new offices of Germany’s foreign intelligence service.
Even 73 years after the end of the war, such discoveries remain common in major German cities.