Three people are seriously injured after a man with an axe attacked passengers on a train near the German city of Wuerzburg.

Between ten and 15 people were reportedly injured in the attack on a local train, with German police saying several of them are critically wounded.

The Bavarian interior minister confirmed that the attacker, a 17-year-old originally from Afghanistan, was shot dead by police.

Joachim Herrmann told public broadcaster ARD that the young man appeared to have made his way to Germany as an unaccompanied minor.

MrHerrmann declined to speculate about the motive for the attack.

The rail line between Wrzburg-Heidingsfeld and Ochsenfurt has been closed, the spokesman said.