(AP) - Police arrested a German man of Afghan parentage in the stabbing of a rabbi in Frankfurt last week, prosecutors said Friday.
The 22-year-old was arrested in Frankfurt Thursday night and admitted to stabbing the rabbi, Zalman Gurevitch, prosecutors in the city said in a statement. The man is being investigated on suspicion of attempted manslaughter and dangerous bodily harm.
According to the rabbi, the assailant said "I'll kill you, you (expletive) Jew," prosecutors say.
However, prosecutors said the suspect—whose name they did not release—denies having either any intention of killing the rabbi and any anti-Semitic motive.
The Frankfurt-born German citizen, whose parents come from Afghanistan, maintains that he greeted the rabbi with the words "salem aleikum," or "peace upon you." In their statement, they said that there was then "an exchange of words which ended in a physical confrontation."
The suspect said that he "felt physically inferior to the rabbi and so reached for his knife," they added. The weapon had a 3-inch blade.