From Yahoo News

DUISBURG, Germany (AFP) - Six Italian men with mafia links were shot dead in an execution-style killing near a train station in this western German city, police said on Wednesday.

Italy's Interior Minister Giuliano Amato said the men were the victims of a vendetta between families in the Calabrian mafia from southern Italy.

A police patrol discovered the men in two vehicles, a Volkswagen Golf car and an Opel van, parked near Duisburg's central station in the early hours of Wednesday.

All six had been shot in the head. Five were dead when they were found and a sixth was critically wounded and died as he was being taken to hospital.

Speaking on Italian television, Amato said he feared further reprisals in the ongoing feud within the criminal organisation known as the 'Ndrangheta, centred on the Calabrian village of San Luca.

Italy's deputy director of police, Luigi De Sena, and anti-mafia prosecutor Pietro Grasso said such killings in another country were unprecedented.

"This would be the first time it has happened in a foreign country," De Sena told the ANSA news agency.

"The Calabria mafia has a significant presence in Germany, but until now they have always tried to keep a low profile."

Grasso said the six men had probably been sent to Duisburg in a bid to escape the consequences of the vendetta.

Unconfirmed reports in Germany said the station was a hotbed of drug dealing.

A woman passerby had heard the sound of gunshots and alerted a police patrol car, which went to the scene.

Duisburg police spokesman Heinrich Rotering said: "The six men found with bullet wounds to the head were Italians aged from 16 to 39."

Witnesses said they saw two people running from the scene of the shooting.

Police said the Italian who was not killed immediately gave no clues to investigators.

"According to the information we have, the man brought to the hospital did not say anything before he died," said another Duisburg police spokesman, Michael Wieseler.

The Volkswagen Golf had bullet holes in its front windscreen, photographs showed.

Police said no weapons had been found in initial checks of the vehicles.

Investigators were studying closed-circuit video of the car park where the bodies were found.

It was the worst shooting in Germany since the killings of seven people in a Chinese restaurant in the small northern town of Sittensen in February.

Four Vietnamese men are to go on trial next Wednesday accused of that crime