Police said they killed one of West Germany's most wanted terrorists last night after he pulled a gun on officers who approached him in a Chinese restaurant in Duesseldorf.
The dead terrorist was identified by federal officials as Willy-Peter Stoll, 28, a prime suspect in the kidnap-murder of West German industrialist Hanns-Martin Schleyer a year ago Tuesday.
Security forces in West Germany and several other countries, including the United States were understood to be on a secret alert because of fears - and possibly clues - that some form of terrorist attack was planned either in commemoration of the Schleyer kidnaping or to coincide with the Middle East summit meeting at Camp David.
Hours after Stoll's death there were unconfirmed reports that police also had captured a woman on the most-wanted list, in a separate Duesseldorf action.
The second alleged terrorist was reported to be Adelheid Schulz, 23, although there was no official confirmation. Stoll and Schulz are wanted in connection with the slayings of Schleyer. Federal Prosecutor Siegfried Buback and banker Juergen Ponto, three political killings that sent tremors through West German society last year.
Security forces here were embarrassed last month when, it turned out, they made a faulty evaluation of a tip and failed to recognize Stoll, Schultz, and another on the most wanted list - Christian Klar, 26, the three had rented a helicopter and were flying over the West German countryside, photographing and reconnoitering areas around a prison where other terrorists are held.
The kidnaping of Schleyer and his murder a month later proved to be a crucial turning point for both the band of extremists known as the Red Army Faction and for police hunting them.
Schleyer's kidnaping led to the hijacking of a Lufthansa airliner by Palestinian extremists and then the death in prison of the three leader of the older Baader-Meinhof gang when the hijacking was thwarted by a daring commando raid.
Since theen, the remaining terrorists have scattered while West German police put on their biggest manhunt. The police record has been spotty, with a number of snafus. In recent months, though, four terrorists were caught in Yugoslavia, four in Bulgaria and others in Holland, Switzerland and France.
Six of the origibal 20 most-wanted now either are captured or dead. About 16 of the expanded list of about 40 so-called hardcore terrorists are either dead or in jail.
Although the year since the Schleyer killing has been calm, federeal officials continued to warn the public that terrorist groups were still at large and capable of new attacks.
Aside from the suspected secret alert in recent days, it is also known that police were taking seriously tips that a handful of terrorists, believed to include other nationalities, were attempting to get to the United States during the time of he Egyptian-Israeli-U.S. summit meeting.
A police spokesman in Duesseldorf said that positive of identification of Stoll was made through fingerprints. According to police, he was sitting in the restaurant when they approached him and asked for identification. Police said, he drew a pistol and a police officer fired several shots into him.