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Deadly park stabbing declared 'terrorist incident' by UK police

運営事務局 JIMOPLE 40 June 21, 2020

(CNN)A stabbing incident in the English town of Reading that left three people dead on Saturday is being investigated as a "terrorist incident," UK police said on Sunday.

"Deputy Assistant Commissioner Dean Haydon, Senior National Coordinator for the Counter Terrorism Policing network, has this morning declared the incident a terrorist incident, and CTPSE will be taking over the investigation," Thames Valley Police said Sunday in a statement.

Six people were injured in the incident at Forbury Gardens in Reading's town center. Three people died and three others suffered serious injuries, police said.

Police had previously said that the attack was not being treated as terrorism.

Police respond to a "serious incident" near Forbury Gardens in Reading town center.

A 25-year-old man from Reading, who was not identified by authorities, was arrested Saturday. Police said the man was detained at the scene on suspicion of murder and authorities are not searching for other suspects.

"I am deeply saddened by the events of last night. This was a truly tragic incident and the thoughts of Thames Valley Police are with all those who have been affected," Chief Constable John Campbell of Thames Valley Police said Sunday.

"Incidents of this nature are very rare, though I know that will be of little comfort to those involved and understand the concern that this incident will have caused amongst our local community," he added.

Emergency services at Forbury Gardens in Reading town center responded to the incident, where three people died.

One eyewitness described a man who shouted before stabbing people. "The park was pretty full, a lot of people sat around drinking with friends, when one lone person walked through, suddenly shouted some unintelligible words and went around a large group of around 10, trying to stab them," 20-year-old Lawrence Wort said.

"He stabbed three of them severely in the neck and under the arms, and then turned and started running towards me, and we turned and started running."

The man stabbed another person in the back of the neck, Wort said, before running out of the park.

The police have urged members of the public to avoid the area, confirming that cordons remain in place; they have also called for witnesses to come forward with information.

"We would like to hear from anyone who has video footage. Out of respect for those deceased and injured, along with their loved ones, please do not circulate this footage on social media -- this will be incredibly distressing," Chief Constable Campbell said.

Earlier on Sunday, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson held a meeting with security officials to discuss the fatal attack.

"The Prime Minister held a meeting at 9am with security officials, police and senior ministers in No10. The Prime Minister was updated on the ongoing investigation into the fatal stabbings in Reading yesterday," a Downing Street spokesperson told CNN.

Sharon Braithwaite, Arnaud Siad, Dakin Andone and Mitchell McCluskey contributed to this story.