First Published: 2017-08-17

13 killed in Barcelona van attack
IS claims attack as driver of van that mowed into packed street in Barcelona, killing at least 13 people, is still on the run.
Middle East Online

Police qualified it as a "terror attack"

BARCELONA - The driver of a van that mowed into a packed street in Barcelona, killing at least 13 people, is still on the run, Spanish police said Thursday.

Josep Lluis Trapero of the regional police of Catalonia, where the popular seaside city is located, told reporters that two other people suspected of being involved in Thursday's terror attack had been arrested -- a Spaniard and a Moroccan.

At least 13 people were killed and more than 50 injured when a driver deliberately slammed his vehicle into crowds on Barcelona's most popular street -- Las Ramblas -- in what police qualified as a "terror attack."

"Soldiers" of the Islamic State group carried out a deadly van attack in Barcelona on Thursday, the jihadist organisation's propaganda outlet Amaq said.

"The executors of the Barcelona attack were soldiers of the Islamic State," Amaq said on its Telegram messenger account, without naming those it claimed were behind the attack.

Amaq said they had launched the attack in response to calls to target states taking part in the United States-led coalition battling the jihadist group in Iraq and Syria.

The attack caused panic on the streets of Spain's largest city and drew condemnation from world leaders.

The famous Las Ramblas is one of Barcelona's busiest streets, lined with shops and restaurants and normally thronged with tourists and street performers until well into the night.

IS, which once controlled a self-declared "caliphate" across large parts of Iraq and Syria, has called for suffered major losses in recent months.

Coalition-backed Iraqi forces recaptured its Iraqi stronghold Mosul in July.

The coalition said the fall of Mosul was a "decisive blow" against the group but did not mark the end of the war against the jihadists.

 

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