13 killed in deadly Barcelona terror attack | 2017-08-18 | daily-sun.com

13 killed in deadly Barcelona terror attack

Sun Online Desk     18th August, 2017 12:52:32 printer

13 killed in deadly Barcelona terror attack

At least 13 people were dead and more than 50 have been injured after a driver deliberately smashed a van into a crowd on Barcelona's most popular street in a terror attack on Thursday.


Quoting the Catalan government's minister of the interior, Joaquim Forn, CNN published the news on its web site.


Spanish newspaper El Pais and Cadena Serradio radio station, citing police sources, also reported the death toll at 13.


Meanwhile, Catalunya Police has arrested at least one suspect in connection with this terror attack.

Photo of Driss Oukabir, man alleged to have rented van used in attack


Local media reports have said two armed men have fled on foot a barricaded themselves in a nearby restaurant where a hostage situation is currently developing. Other reports have said just one attacker has taken refuge in the bar.


Police officers have evacuated nearby streets, which are part of the popular Las Ramblas area, and confirmed there have been multiple fatalities.


Pictures from the scene showed police helping people injured in what has been described as a ‘massive crash’.


People are now taking shelter in local shops and cafes, according to local reports.


Reports say that a Spanish passport of a man with a Moroccan name was found inside the van.


The area has now been cordoned off and local metro stations are closed.


One eyewitness said: “We have seen people lying on the ground, the police told us to leave quickly.”


Eyewitness Ethan Spibey told Sky News: ‘It was real chaos, people started running, screaming. There was a loud bang.’


Another witness Aamer Anwar said: “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.


“Police were very, very quickly there, police officers with guns, batons, everywhere. Then the whole street started getting pushed back.”


Tom Gueller, who lives on a road adjoining the site of the attack, was forced to flee when the vehicle began hitting pedestrians.


He told the BBC: “I heard screams and a bit of a crash and then I just saw the crowd parting and this van going full pelt down the middle of the Ramblas, and I immediately knew that it was a terrorist attack or something like that.


“I ran away, I mean I live near, I had to run back about 50 metres or so and go up to my flat and obviously see what’s happening on the road from my balcony.”


Asked about the van, he said: “It wasn’t slowing down at all. It was just going straight through the middle of the crowds in the middle of the Ramblas.”


In recent weeks, threatening graffiti against tourists has appeared in Barcelona, which draws at least 11 million visitors a year.


In one video released under the slogan “tourism kills neighbourhoods”, several hooded individuals stopped a tourist bus in Barcelona, slashed the tyres and spray-painted the windscreen.


Since July 2016 a number of vehicles have been driven into crowds in a series of attacks across Europe, killing well over 100 people in Nice, Berlin, London and Stockholm.


Las Ramblas is a popular shopping street in the centre of Barcelona and one of the city’s most popular tourist destinations.