Vehicle Attack near London Mosque Leaves Several Injured
A van drove into crowds of Muslim worshippers near Finsbury Park Mosque.
A van intentionally plowed into pedestrians near a London Mosque early Monday morning injuring 10 people in what the city’s mayor is calling a “horrific terrorist attack.”
According to police, all of the victims were Muslims. Worshippers had just finished prayers during the holy month of Ramadan and were walking in the Finsbury Park area at 12:30 a.m. local time. Many had crowded around a man who had collapsed in the street and were rendering him first aid when the van rammed mounted the sidewalk and rammed into pedestrians.
A 48-year-old man was pulled from the vehicle and detailed by people in the area, eyewitnesses and officials said. He was later arrested on the suspicion of attempted murder.
The man who had collapsed on the street later died at the hospital, and was originally counted as a victim of the attack, but police are now back pedaling, saying they are unsure if the man died as a result of the attack or his previous health failings.
Saeed Hasm, a witness to the incident, saw the van speed up and hit people by the mosque.
"We saw the van speeding up and we thought maybe he was late for work or wanting to catch the traffic light, but suddenly he turned to the mosque side," Hasm, who works at the London's Qatari Embassy, told NBC News. "He hit the people, there were three people on the floor, then he moved on and there were another five or six on the floor."
Metropolitan Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu said that the incident was, in fact, a terrorist attack at a press briefing.
"Given the methodology ... this had all the hallmarks of a terrorist incident," Basu told reporters. "This is an attack against London and all Londoners and we should all stand together against extremists whatever their cause."
Basu told reporters there will be extra security and police resources added to the streets, especially near mosques as Ramadan continues.
This attack marks the third time someone has driven a vehicle into crowds in London in three months.