Another deadly car-ramming attack has taken place in a major European city, this time in Barcelona.
Information is still coming in from Thursday afternoon’s car-ramming attack in a busy district of of Barcelona, the capital of Spain’s northeastern region of Catalonia. Some details remain sketchy as Spanish authorities continue to work arduously to determine what exactly happened.
Here’s what we know so far about the incident:
- Reports of a minibus swerving into a crowd of pedestrians in Barcelona’s bustling Las Ramblas district emerged at around 17:30 GMT.
- So far local authorities have confirmed the death toll at 13, but this figure could rise.
- Around 100 people were injured in the incident, 15 of whom are in critical condition.
- Local police have confirmed the incident as a terror attack, and Daesh has claimed responsibility.
- Contrary to local reports, police said there was no hostage situation in a Turkish restaurant following the car-ramming incident.
- Police said they arrested two suspects linked to the incident – one in the town of Ripoll, north of Barcelona, and one in the town of Alcanar, southwest of Barcelona.
21:40 Police presence for the incident of #Barcelona is still working. We confirm two person under arrest— Mossos (@mossos) August 17, 2017
- The arrested suspects have only been identified as a Moroccan and a Spaniard from Spain’s North African enclave of Melilla.
- Police have said that a house explosion in Alcanar that killed one person earlier in the day was linked to the car-ramming incident. A police source told Reuters that explosives were being prepared in the house.
- The driver of the minibus used in the attack is still believed to be on the run.
- There is currently no official information on the identity of the attacker, but local media have identified him as Moroccan national Driss Oukabir based on an ID that was found at the scene. However, other reports are stating that the alleged suspect has come forward and claimed that his ID had been stolen. Reports state that his ID may have been taken by his younger brother Moussa Oukabir, who is now allegedly the prime suspect.
- In an operation conducted around midnight, Catalan police said four suspects were killed and one injured in a shootout in the town of Cambrils, southwest of Barcelona. Six civilians and a police officer were also injured.
- An investigation is underway to determine whether the gunmen in Cambrils were preparing to use explosives in a second attack. Police say they believe they were linked to the incident in Barcelona. It is unclear as yet if the driver of the vehicle used in the Barcelona attack was among them.
- Police declared the situation in Cambrils to be under control, adding that they will carry out controlled explosions in the area.
- Spain has declared three days of mourning and Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy has said that security in the country will be reinforced.