British police have labeled a New Year’s Eve stabbing as a terrorist attack.
Three people, including a police officer, were injured in the stabbing attack, which took place at Manchester’s Victoria Station at about 9 p.m. on Monday, the Telegraph reported.
The attacker screamed “Allahu Akbar'” while the attack was taking place, according to reports.
Injuries to the two civilians — described as a man and woman in their 50s or 60s — were reported as very serious. The police sergeant was stabbed in the shoulder, police said.
Greater Manchester Police Chief Constable Ian Hopkins said police have worked to identify the attacker and determined the motive for the attack.
“We are treating this as a terrorist investigation which is being led by counterterrorism officers with support from Greater Manchester Police. They were working throughout the night to piece together the details of what happened and to identify the man who was arrested,” he said.
“Police officers at Victoria Train Station responded to a man armed with a knife and swiftly detained him. The officers acted with incredible bravery in tackling the armed attacker at the busy Metrolink station and ensured he was immediately detained. He remains in custody here in Manchester,” Hopkins said.
He added that “we are currently searching an address in the Cheetham Hill area of Manchester which is believed to be where the man had most recently been living. Our work will continue to ensure we get to the full facts of what happened and why it took place.”
— Kevin J Alderton (@KevinJAlderton1) January 1, 2019
The BBC reported that neighbors of the property being searched said that a Somali Muslim family lived there.
Sam Clack, 38, a BBC producer who witnessed the attack, said he heard “this most blood-curdling scream.”
“What it looked like was a guy in his 60s with a woman of similar age and another guy all dressed in black,” he said. “It looked like they were having a fight, but she was screaming in this blood-curdling way. I saw police in high-viz come towards him. He came towards me.”
“I looked down and saw he had a kitchen knife with a black handle with a good, 12-inch blade. It was just fear, pure fear,” Clack said.
— bill ray (@12billpen) January 1, 2019
“He was very aggressive and very intent on causing more harm than he actually did,” Clack said, according to the BBC. “It was very, very scary.”
Clack said that after police subdued the man, the attacker said, “As long as you keep bombing other countries this sort of s— is going to keep happening.”
Russ Jackson, an assistant chief constable with the GMP, called the attack “frenzied” and “random in nature,” The Guardian reported.
Jackson said there was “nothing to suggest others were involved.”
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.