The incident took place in the central part of the city, close to an area in which a music festival took place at the weekend, Suddeutsche Zeitung reported. Police have cordoned off the area around the restaurant and are conducting a crime scene investigation.
“The explosion in downtown Ansbach was not a gas explosion, but was caused by an explosive device,” Ansbach Mayor Carda Seidel confirmed. Seidel also said that it should not be ruled out that there could have been several explosions.
Police suspect that the only person killed in the explosion was the attacker himself, local media report.
The police have set up an operations center in City Hall and a crisis team has been formed. A special police task force (SEC) has also been deployed. Volunteer firefighters from Nuremberg, Katzwang and Almoshof were called in to assist authorities.
A spokesman for the Bavarian interior minister said that the explosion in the Eugene Weinstube restaurant was a“deliberate” act rather than an accident.
“At present we assume it is not an accident," the spokesman said.
Initial reports indicated that a gas leak may have caused the incident, but the mayor of the city, announced that authorities believe it was triggered by an improvised explosive device.
According to media reports, the explosion occurred in front of a restaurant shortly after 10:00pm local time. A music festival nearby was forced to end and around 2,500 visitors were evacuated.
Police and rescue workers are currently engaged in a large-scale operation. Bavarian Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann is en route to the area, according to his spokesman.
Heavily armed police and rescue personnel are on site, and a helicopter with search light has been circling the city.
Mobilizing emergency forces and heavily armed police in the streets of Ansbach, Germany after the explosion. pic.twitter.com/inZxNxD5QT— Isaac Cohen (@IHWCo) July 24, 2016