At least 13 folks have died and 80 had been injured after a van ploughed into crowds in Barcelona’s well-known Las Ramblas, well-liked with vacationers, police and native officers say.
The car sped alongside the pedestrian space, mowing down folks and sending others fleeing for canopy.
Police are treating it as a terrorist assault.
The head of the Catalan area mentioned two folks had been arrested.
Spanish media are reporting one other suspect died in a shootout. El Mundo newspaper mentioned the shootout occurred in Sant Just Lesvern, on the outskirts of town.
What we all know thus far
Aftermath in photos
Police have launched a photograph of a person named as Driss Oubakir, who’s alleged to have rented the van used to drive into pedestrians.
Local media say he’s in his 20s, and was born in Morocco. It is unclear if he’s a kind of arrested.
So-called Islamic State has mentioned it was behind the van assault in Las Ramblas, saying in a press release carried by its Amaq information company that it was carried out by “Islamic State soldiers”. The group gave no additional proof or particulars to again this declare.
The assault occurred on the peak of the season in certainly one of Europe’s prime vacationer locations.
Witnesses mentioned the van had intentionally focused folks, weaving back and forth because it drove down the boulevard.
Spanish media experiences mentioned the motive force of the car – a white Fiat that had been rented within the metropolis – then fled on foot.
Vehicles have been used to ram into crowds in a collection of assaults throughout Europe since July final yr.
At the scene: By Anna Lindsay, BBC News
As I used to be attempting to stroll to Las Ramblas I used to be stopped close by at a police cordon within the vacationer melting pot of lovely, palm-filled Placa Reial.
From there, I may see armoured automobiles lining Las Ramblas and ambulances screeching to get previous, a way of panic within the air.
Soon, a number of plain-clothed officers in bullet-proof vests shouted at everybody to instantly evacuate the sq..
Visibly shocked vacationers had been left questioning how this might occur in what many contemplate one of many most secure locations to go to in Europe. Local residents couldn’t consider this was taking place of their metropolis too.
We ran to a close-by restaurant, excessive nervousness and anxiousness on the faces of everybody there, getting updates from the TV inside and cellphones ringing endlessly.
The proprietor instructed us the police needed him to shut his premises instantly and we needed to search shelter elsewhere. The safety zone was being widened because the attacker was being hunted, he mentioned.
What did folks see?
A businessman from New Orleans, who was simply arriving in a taxi in Las Ramblas, mentioned: “I heard a crowd screaming. It appeared like they had been screaming for a film star.
“I noticed the van. It had already been busted on the entrance. It was weaving left and proper, attempting to hit folks as quick as attainable. There had been folks mendacity on the bottom.”
Aamer Anwar mentioned he was strolling down Las Ramblas, which was “jam-packed” with vacationers.
“All of a sudden, I just sort of heard a crashing noise and the whole street just started to run, screaming. I saw a woman right next to me screaming for her kids,” he instructed Sky News.
“Police had been very, in a short time there, law enforcement officials with weapons, batons, in all places. Then the entire avenue began getting pushed again.
“Police officers who obtained there simply began screaming at folks to maneuver again, transfer again.”
Kevin Kwast, who’s on vacation in Barcelona together with his household, mentioned: “I used to be consuming with my household in La Boqueria market very close to the place the crash occurred.
“Hundreds of individuals began stampeding by the market… we began operating with them going outdoors proper into the place casualties had been already on the bottom.
“Police pushed us into a money transfer shop and we’ve been sheltering there for over an hour.”
How have leaders reacted?
Barcelona’s mayor, Ada Colau, mentioned town would maintain a minute of silence on Friday at noon.
Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy mentioned he was heading to Barcelona, including: “Maximum co-ordination to arrest the attackers, reinforce security and attend to all those affected.”
The United States has supplied its help to Spain.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson additionally mentioned consular help was being offered to Americans within the metropolis, and urged US nationals to examine in with their households.
“Terrorists around the world should know the United States and our allies are resolved to find you and bring you to justice,” he instructed reporters.
UK Prime Minister Theresa May mentioned her ideas had been with the victims, including that “the UK stands with Spain against terror”.
French President Emmanuel Macron mentioned: “We remain united and determined.”
- Central boulevard that runs 1.2km (zero.75 miles) by the centre of Barcelona
- Runs from town’s Plaça de Catalunya (Catalonia Square) to the Christopher Columbus monument on the seafront.
- Popular with vacationers due to its market stalls, bars and eating places
- Barcelona metropolis council restricted site visitors stream due to heavy pedestrian use of the road
Deadly car assaults
- Charlottesville, Virginia, 12 August 2017: James Fields charged with homicide after allegedly driving into protesters
- Paris, 9 August 2017: A person rammed a BMW into a gaggle of troopers, injuring six.
- London, three June 2017: Eight folks died when three jihadists drove a van into pedestrians on London Bridge after which stabbed passers-by. A person was killed later in June in a van assault on Muslims in Finsbury Park.
- London, 22 March 2017: Four folks died when a automotive rammed into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge, and the motive force then stabbed to demise a policeman
- Stockholm, Sweden, 7 April 2017: Uzbek Rakhmat Akilov killed 4 folks when he drove a lorry right into a division retailer.
- Berlin, Germany, 19 December 2016: Tunisian Anis Amri ploughed a truck right into a Christmas market at Breitscheidplatz, killing 12 folks
- Nice, France, 14 July 2016: Tunisian Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel drove a truck into crowds on the Promenade des Anglais, killing 86 folks on Bastille Day
- France, December 2014: A van was pushed right into a Christmas market in Nantes and a automotive rammed pedestrians in Dijon, leaving greater than 20 wounded.
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Van hits crowds in Barcelona vacationer space by: Farah Grimm published: