Thursday, 22 August, 2019

Melbourne attack: CBD explosion part of plan

1 dead, 2 hurt in stabbings in Melbourne, Australia, video shows man attacking cops Melbourne attack: Man arrested after fire and stabbings
Patty Aguilar | 12 November, 2018, 13:55

Australian police on Friday said a Somali man who stabbed three people in the city of Melbourne on Friday drove a auto laden with gas cylinders which caught fire and that they are treating the attack as terrorism.

During the attack, police and civilians tried to subdue Shire Ali before a new police member, only three months out of the academy, shot him in the chest.

Blake Johnson from Channel 7 brought us the latest.

Ambulance Victoria said paramedics had assessed three people at the scene.

Police were initially called to an incident in Bourke Street, right in the heart of Melbourne, after reports of smoke and a vehicle in flames.

Police shot the man when he approached officers swinging the knife. The suspect was shot in the chest by police, Clayton said.

"This person (the attacker) was as much on a list because of his familial connections and others that he associated with as he was for any conduct that he had been involved in", he said.

The attacker was not publicly identified but had been "a person of interest" to Australian intelligence agencies, Ashton said.

Ashton said, however, that police did not believe there were any ongoing threats to the public.

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The bomb squad was called after the barbecue-style gas cylinders were found in the vehicle.

Superintendent David Clayton said investigators are "keeping an open mind" and there was "no known link to terrorism at this stage".

Witness footage showed police struggling for at least a minute to corral the towering man - who was wearing a dark tunic - as he lunged, slashed and stabbed wildly at two officers.

The prime minister, Scott Morrison, released a statement: "I condemn the act of terrorism in Melbourne today that has tragically taken the life of a fellow Australian who has died as a result of this evil and cowardly attack".

Officers were initially called to reports of a vehicle fire near Bourke Street, a busy thoroughfare, at about 16:20 local time (05:20 GMT).

Mr Hair said two civilians became involved as well as two police, trying to stop the man from his attack.

The apparent attack came as a 28-year-old James Gargasoulas underwent trial in Melbourne for driving into a crowd in the same area in 2017, killing six people.

The incident occurred shortly before what was expected to be a busy night in the area, with the annual unveiling of the Myer Christmas windows.

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