Police Investigating London Van Attack As Possible Terrorism
- Author: Salvatore Jensen Jun 20, 2017,
Jun 20, 2017, 1:59
The incident comes at a time when emotions are high in England, where there have been several recent terrorist attacks.
The 48-year-old killer driver was subdued by a crowd and arrested, authorities said.
Eyewitness Abdul Rahman said the driver had said he wanted to "kill all Muslims" and told the BBC that he struck the man and helped subdue him.
Basu thanked those who detained the driver, adding: "Their restraint in the circumstances was commendable".
British police said the incident was being investigated as an act of terrorism, which would make it the fourth such attack in England since March, including two van-ramming and stabbing attacks on and near London Bridge, and a bombing outside an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester.
The attack occurred just outside of a mosque in north London, police said. Two others were treated at the scene.
Witness Hussain Ali, 28, told the Press Association that "the leader of the mosque said "You do not touch him". Police said a man who was driving the auto has been arrested and taken to a hospital as a precaution. "He chose exactly the time that people pray, and the mosque is too small and full, so some pray outside".
British Prime Minister Theresa May condemned the attack "on innocent people" and declared that Britain would stop at nothing to defeat extremism.
- One man was found dead at the scene, according to police, but it's not clear if he was killed during the attack. May said earlier she would chair an emergency security Cabinet session later Monday and that her thoughts were with the injured, their loved ones and emergency officials who responded to the incident.
The mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said extra police had been deployed to reassure communities, especially those observing Ramadan.
- Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the opposition Labour Party, said he is "shocked by this horrific and cruel attack" and appealed "for people and the media to remain calm and respectful of those affected".
"It's Ramadan and it's perfectly normal, and eight people have been injured, some of them I understand extremely seriously, and, as I see it, this is a terror on the streets and it's a terror of the people on the streets, in the communities I'm very proud to represent in Parliament, and that's why I'm here today". The Westminster Bridge attack was similar but the attacked used a auto, not a van.
She has faced heavy criticism for her response to a fire in a London tower block on Wednesday which killed at least 58 people, and for her record on security after a series of attacks blamed on Islamist militants in recent months. Police said that person was the lone death in the incident, but it was unclear if it was the van that caused the death.
- Opened in 1994, Finsbury Park Mosque is an unassuming five-story red brick building in residential north London, close to Arsenal Football Club's Emirates Stadium.
The Evening Standard newspaper said the van appeared to have been rented in Wales, although there was no immediate confirmation of this from the authorities.
The London Bridge terrorist attack was also committed with a van plowing through pedestrians.