Miércoles, 23 Agosto, 2017

May Says London Van Crash 'Potential Terrorist Attack,' PA Says

Irune Rengel | 19 Junio, 2017, 12:57

A van drove into pedestrians early Monday morning in north London, police say, in what they are investigating as a terrorist attack.

"The driver of the van.was found detained by members of the public at the scene and then arrested by police in connection with the incident", the statement said.

In the initial hours, the mosque incident was not easy to follow on television, as police restricted access to cameras as the worked to secure the scene.

British Prime Minister Theresa May said police had confirmed the incident was being treated as a potential terrorist attack and said she would chair an emergency response meeting later on Monday.

One witness told Sky News that the incident happened after worshippers were leaving the Finsbury Park mosque after midnight prayers.

- Police say they believe there was only one man in the van.

"The van just came through as people were walking towards where it was coming from", he said.

1 arrested after vehicle strikes pedestrians in London
The crash immediately raised concerns of another terrorist attack in London; however, police did not reveal the possible cause. A helicopter and several emergency vehicles were deployed at the scene and the area has been put under heavy police cordon.

Few details of the attack have been revealed, and the identity of the suspect is still unknown.

He told the Sun: "Whoever did this, he did it to hurt people and it's a terrorist attack".

The Finsbury Park mosque was associated with extremist ideology for several years after the 9/11 attacks in the United States, but was shut down and reorganized.

Metropolitan Police Service said officers were called at 12:20 a.m. local time, to the scene on Seven Sisters Road in Finsbury Park neighborhood, where many immigrants live.

The Counter Terrorism Command is leading the investigation, according to the statement.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan said following that attack that there had been a 40-percent increase in racist incidents in the city and a fivefold increase in the number of anti-Muslim incidents.

It also comes at a time of political turmoil, as Prime Minister May plunges into severance talks with the European Union, weakened by the loss of her parliamentary majority in an 8 June election.

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A man leapt out of the van and stabbed at least one person, the Evening Standard newspaper reported, citing witnesses. "It's a very strong Muslim community in this area and what's happening today is I think the people must be extremely, extremely sad", Al-Sulaman said.

"It was a van that mounted the pavement as men and women were leaving the mosque to go home to their families and friends and their loved ones", Jackson said. One man died at the scene and 10 people were injured.

Another witness, Ratib Al-Sulaman, told CNN there was a Muslim majority in the local area. Many police cars and ambulances were responding.

Arsenal Football Club's Emirates Stadium is located close by, while further up Seven Sisters Road is the green space of Finsbury Park, which opened in 1869 and gives the area its name. The London Ambulance Service said it had sent "a number of resources" to the scene.

Monday's incident was the third since March involving a vehicle running into pedestrians in London.

Manchester was also hit by a severe attack when a bomber killed more than 20 people at an Ariana Grande concert.

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