MUNICH — A 21-year-old refugee from Syria killed a woman with a machete in southwestern Germany on Sunday and was arrested after a motorist deliberately ran him down, according to the police. It was the nation’s second major act of violence carried out by an asylum seeker in a week.
The man, whose identity was not released, had been involved in at least one previous violent episode, according to officials in Reutlingen, where the afternoon attack occurred near the central bus station.
“At this time, we suspect this crime is linked to relationship troubles,” Michael Schaal, a police spokesman, said. “Witnesses have told us that before the attack, they had argued.”
Mr. Schaal added that he could not provide further details about the nature of the relationship because the authorities had not yet been able to identify the victim.
“She had no papers or identification with her,” he said. “So far, we have not been able to find any relatives.”
After attacking the woman, the assailant fled into the street, the police said. A motorist who spotted the armed man running down a sidewalk near the bus station aimed his car at him, knocking him to the ground. Police officers arrived and quickly subdued the suspect, who was also hurt.
The motorist was slightly injured, as was a woman whose windshield had been struck by the machete, Mr. Schaal said.
The suspect was previously cited by the police for causing “bodily injury,” Mr. Schaal said, but he offered no further details regarding that case. “He is undergoing medical treatment and will be interrogated,” Mr. Schaal said.
According to a report in the Stuttgarter Zeitung newspaper, the suspect and the woman worked in a kebab shop and had an argument.
The attacker acted alone, and “based on what we know at this time, the citizens of Reutlingen face no further danger,” the police said in a statement hours after the attack.
Although Germans have not been the victims of a coordinated terror attack on the scale of those in France and Belgium, the country has been unsettled by a week of violence.
Last Monday, a 17-year-old refugee who had come to Germany from Afghanistan as an unaccompanied minor injured four people on a train and a passer-by near Würzburg. He was armed with an ax and a knife. On Friday, an Iranian-German opened fire here in Munich in a rampage that the authorities there said was not linked to a political motivation. Nevertheless, it sent waves of panic through this southern German city until the police confirmed that the gunman was dead.
Syrians accounted for more than a third of the 397,000 applications for asylum in Germany in the first half of this year. Most will be granted the right to stay and begin the integration process of learning the language and laws.
An earlier version of this article incorrectly attributed a fact about Reutlingen to a police statement. Although Reutlingen is in fact south of Stuttgart, the police did not say that in their statement.