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50,000 people to evacuate Hanover as expert defuse WWII bombs

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Some 50,000 people have been ordered to evacuate Hanover as the German city prepares to defuse several bombs dating back to the World War II-era.

The evacuation operations are set to began on Sunday with locals being advised to take necessary items such as medications and turn off all electrical and gas appliances.

A program of tours, films and sports events have been scheduled to entertain the evacuees while experts verify the locations of the bombs and attempt to defuse them.

Experts have determined that at least five bombs remain in 13 probable locations.

The unexploded bombs are thought to be under a large construction site in city’s Vahrenwald, List, and Nordstadt districts.

Around 2,500 police and firefighters are set to be deployed in the city after evacuations are completed.

“We don’t quite know if [bomb disposal] experts will be able to find bombs on Sunday,” said the head of a local fire department.

Thousands of people died during Allied bombing of Hanover during the second World War. On October 9, 1943 alone over 1,200 people were killed and 250,000 rendered homeless by 261,000 bombs.

The evacuations are reported to be the second largest in the city since WWII. The biggest, which involved 54,000 people, was in Augsburg on Christmas Eve 2016, after an almost four-ton British bomb was discovered during construction work.

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