Published: Mon, June 19, 2017
Industry | By Dora Warner

Council says van struck people leaving mosque


"One man was pronounced dead at the scene", police said. He was taken to the hospital as a precaution and will later undergo a mental evaluation. The Sun newspaper said a van hit a crowd of people near Finsbury Park mosque, Reuters reported. He suggested that the attack could be a hate crime or terror attack.

One man was trapped under the van and people tried to lift up the vehicle to free him.

"I just saw everyone flying", one witness, who asked to be identified as Khalid, told ABC News on Monday.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan called the attack "a horrific terrorist attack on innocent people".

"At that moment in time, basically a van swerved into them deliberately", he said, citing a witness at the scene.

Harun Khan, the Council's secretary general said: "It appears from eye witness accounts that the perpetrator was motivated by Islamophobia".

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Police said the driver was detained by the crowd until police arrived.

The attack is the latest to hit a country traumatized by a wave of recent terrorist incidents and a city still struggling to deal with last week's deadly tower block inferno. Eight people injured were taken to three separate hospitals, with two being treated at the scene for minor injuries. "No one! No one!"

The Muslim Council tweeted that worshippers had been struck and said its prayers were with the victims.

"The British Muslim community requires all decent people to stand with us against this evil violence".

Reports say that the police personnel at Finsbury Park had blocked off a busy road as almost 100 people had gathered after the incident.

Reports said a helicopter could be heard circling over Finsbury Park and police have cordoned off the area.

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Eyewitnesses told British media that the van seemed to have veered and hit people intentionally.

The mosque itself gained notoriety for sermons by radical cleric Abu Hamza al-Masri, who was sentenced to life in a USA prison in January 2015 after his conviction on terrorism-related charges.

It is located a short walk away from Emirates Stadium, home of the Arsenal football club in north London.

One person has been arrested but police have not said if the crash was deliberate or accidental.

Britain's terrorism threat level now remains at severe.

Then on June 3, eight people were killed and 48 were injured when three men drove a van into pedestrians on London Bridge before leaping out and launching a stabbing spree in nearby bars and restaurants.

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On May 22, a suicide bomber killed 22 children and adults at a concert held by United States singer Ariana Grande in Manchester in northern England.

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