The attacker, identified only as Alex W., 28, is still in detention pending the outcome of an investigation on suspicion of murder.

Several portraits of the young woman with a headscarf were on the steps of Dresden's town hall for the public memorial organised by local civil rights groups on Saturday.


The ceremony drew more than 1,000 people, including the Egyptian ambassador and officials from the state of Saxony, where the stabbing incident took place.

The knife attack has drawn public outrage in Egypt and Germany [Reuters]

"This crime by a lone wolf destroyed a family's hopes within minutes," said Ramzy Ezzeldin Ramzy, the Egyptian ambassador.

"We expect the attacker to be swiftly sentenced and her family to receive justice."

Ramzy said he was convinced "this act does not reflect the reality of the German people ... [who] have an open mind, including to people of other faiths".

The incident sparked outrage among the Muslim community and in Egypt, where the German response is seen as too little, too late, and as an example of racism and anti-Muslim sentiment.

Hosni Mubarak, the Egyptian president, asked German Chancellor Angela Merkel to ensure swift justice when they met at G8 summit in Italy.

Merkel expressed her condolences to Mubarak on Thursday and sent her top official for immigration affairs to offer sympathy to Sherbini's husband, but has not publicly condemned the slaying.

In London, a Muslim group gathered outside the German embassy to protest Sherbini's death carrying signs saying Muslims are being treated as second-class citizens and calling for an end to Islamophobia.