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East German Escapes As Border Guards Fire Tracer Bullets

December 1, 1987

MUNICH, West Germany (AP) _ A 28-year-old East German man fled over a border fence into West Germany as communist guards fired flares to try track him down, border police said Tuesday.

The man hurt his hand in the escape and was treated at a hospital after reaching Bavaria late Monday, West German police said.

Two East German border guards saw the man after he had climbed over the first border barrier on the communist side of the border.

As he tried to get over a 10 1/2 -foot-high metal fence, the final barrier on the heavily-fortified border, the guards threatened to shoot unless the man lay down on the ground, police said.

But he saw an opening in the fence, jumped up suddenly and used the hole to propel himself over the fence, the statement said. The guards fired flares but apparently did not use bullets to stop the escape, police added.

Police declined to give more details and refused to identify the man.

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