Sunday, June 04, 2017
In the latest Muslim extremist attack to hit a major western city, least seven people died and up to 48 were injured after a terrorist weaponised vehicle attack on late night revellers close to London Bridge in the UK capital. Police says a white van moving at around 50 mph drove into pedestrians in the busy streets before three men armed with knives leaped out and going on a stabbing spree in pubs and pavement cafes in the popular Borough Market area.
The attackers were shot and killed by armed police officers within 8 minutes of the alarm being raised, London Metropolitan police reported.
In addition to the terrorists shot by police, 12 people have been arrested in connection with the attack, following police raids at addresses in Barking, east London.
Eyewitnesses said the three assailants were driving over London Bridge in a Hertz rental van, when they accelerated to “about 50mph,” according to Holly Jones, a BBC journalist who was with friends close to the scene.
“We thought it was a car accident but as we got closer we could see a lot of blood and bodies. There was a pregnant woman on the right who was severely injured and on the left there was a man being resuscitated, but he started breathing. We don’t know whether the woman survived,” one witness told the Guardian.
Another witness identified as Eric Siguenza told a BBC news crew that three men “jumped out of the van and that’s when they started attacking people on the road.”
“As they headed down the stairs, as they were running towards the people, they were shouting, ‘This is for Allah,’” he said.
They were just yards from Borough Market, a popular nightspot. It was just after 10pm, minutes after the Champions League Final wrapped up in Cardiff, and the streets were full of revelers.
Other witnesses, talking to TV and radio reporters said the violence occurred in full view of hundreds of onlookers.
“I saw a man in red with quite a large blade, I don’t know the measurement, I guess maybe 10 inches. He was stabbing a man… he stabbed him about three times fairly calmly,” an eyewitness, who identified himself as Ben, told a Daily Telegraph reporter. “It looked like the man had maybe been trying to intervene but there wasn’t much that he could do, he was being stabbed quite coldly and he slumped to the ground.”
“They stabbed this girl maybe 10 times, 15 times. She was going, ‘Help me, help me,’” a witness named Gerard told the BBC, saying that he lobbed a bottle at the assailants to try to scare them off.
Many sought refuge in the cafes in the market square. But safety was temporary, as the attackers went inside the cafes, stabbing indiscriminately.
“He stabbed her in the neck,” Elsbeth Smedley told CNN, recounting an attack on a waitress. “He stabbed another man in the back, and then he ran out of the restaurant.”
Police said that they received the first call about the attack at 10:08pm. An armed unit, on standby because the high level security alert imposed after the recent Manchester bombing was still in force, was dispatched immediately. Eyewitnesses described a cacophony of gunfire. Within eight minutes, the three stabbers were dead. The canisters the terrorists had strapped to their bodies were crude fakes.
Police said that they received the first call about the attack at 10:08pm. An armed unit was dispatched immediately. Eyewitnesses described a cacophony of gunfire. Within eight minutes, the three stabbers were dead. The canisters the terrorists had strapped to their bodies were crude fakes.
Shortly after the three terrorists were shot, police began clearing the area, fearing other extremists were still at large in the area.
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