UK police: New Year’s Eve stabbing of three treated as terrorism – Witness: Suspect shouted Islamic slogans during the frenzied attack

UGC issued by PA shows Police restraining a man after he stabbed three people at Victoria Station in Manchester, England, late Monday Dec. 31, 2018. Two commuters - a man and woman in their 50s - were taken to hospital with knife injuries and a British Transport Police (BTP) officer was stabbed in the shoulder. Police said a man was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and remains in custody. (Sam Clack/PA via AP)

By GREGORY KATZ,  Associated Press  LONDON (AP) 01/01 — Police in the English city of Manchester are questioning a man arrested in the New Year’s Eve stabbing of three people at a train station and treating it as a terrorist attack, authorities said Tuesday.

Greater Manchester Chief Constable Ian Hopkins said a man and a woman suffered “very serious” injuries in the attack and remained in the hospital. Both have abdominal injuries and the woman also has injuries to her face.

A police sergeant who was stabbed in the shoulder has been released.

The attack happened at Manchester’s Victoria Station shortly before 9 p.m. on New Year’s Eve. The busy train station is next to Manchester Arena, where a suicide bomber killed 22 people at an Ariana Grande concert in 2017.

Police at Victoria Station in Manchester, England, late Monday Dec. 31, 2018 after a man had stabbed three people. Two commuters – a man and woman in their 50s – were taken to hospital with knife injuries and a British Transport Police (BTP) officer was stabbed in the shoulder. Police said a man was arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and remains in custody. (Pat Hurst/PA via AP)

 

Police have detained the suspect, who has been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder, but not yet provided a motive for the stabbings. A witness said the suspect shouted Islamic slogans during the frenzied attack.

Assistant Chief Constable Russ Jackson said police believe they have identified the suspect and are searching his home in the Cheetham Hill neighborhood of Manchester.

BBC producer Sam Clack, who was on the train platform, said he heard a “blood-curdling scream” when the attack started and saw a man dressed in black having what looked like a fight with two victims.

Clack said he heard the man with the weapon shout Islamist slogans during the assault, and then the attacker was chased by police.

“He came towards me. I looked down and saw he had a kitchen knife with a black handle with a good, 12-inch blade,” Clack said, adding that his reaction “was just fear, pure fear.”

Clack said police used pepper spray and a stun gun to bring the man down.

Police say there’s no indication that any others were involved in planning or assisting the attack. The investigation is being led by Britain’s counterterrorism police.

British police tried to reassure the public that the area was safe despite the attack.

The incident is “not ongoing” and there is “currently no intelligence to suggest that there is any wider threat,” Assistant Chief Constable Rob Potts said.

“I know that the events of last night will have affected many people and caused concern,” Hopkins said. “That the incident happened so close to the scene of the terrorist attack on 22 May, 2017, makes it even more dreadful.”

Prime Minister Theresa May expressed concern for the victims and thanked emergency workers for their “courageous response.”

Extra police officers were on the city’s streets Tuesday as a precaution.

Britain’s official threat level has long been set at “severe,” indicating that intelligence analysts believe an attack is highly likely.

https://www.apnews.com/29f22d53c12b40b39b99e2cc6bf9c359

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 

Posted in: Arrests, Assault, Extremism/Extremist Groups, Injuries, International Policing, Islamic Terrorism/Extremism, Mass Casualty Attacks, Murder/Attempted Murder, Police, Stun Guns, Terrorism, Use of Force, Victims of Terrorism

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