A Kiwi woman living in Berlin has spoken to NZ Herald Focus following the tragic events at a Christmas market in the city this evening (local time).
A truck careered into the market at what would have been one of the most crowded times over the Christmas period, killing nine people and injuring 50.
Rosaria Gandar, who has lived in Germany for over a year, told NZ Herald Focus that notifications that friends were safe on social media was the first she heard of the attack.
"Christmas markets are all over Berlin and are always super popular... That Christmas market is a hive of activity not only during the day but at night so that will be a big knock to it that's for sure," she said.
Gandar described Berlin as having a "together atmosphere" and being patriotic.
She told Focus her "shocked friends feel like they have been attacked personally."
Gandar said it was "instantly ruled out" that a visiting friend would return to her home tonight, unwilling to risk a trip on public transport in case of a second attack.
She said the city was "in shock" as there had been no warnings about attacks in Berlin, but hoped that the attack did not dampen the city's Christmas spirit.