What we know so far about the Barcelona terror attack


Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article titled “What we know so far about the Barcelona terror attack” was written by Nicola Slawson, for theguardian.com on Friday 18th August 2017 01.04 UTC

A van has been deliberately driven into pedestrians on one of Barcelona’s most popular boulevards, killing 13 people in what Spanish police called a terrorist attack. Here’s what we we know so far:

  • Thirteen people have been killed in the attack claimed by Isis that happened shortly after 5pm local time on Thursday, Catalonia’s interior minister Joaquim Forn has confirmed.
  • Early on Friday, police shot dead four suspects and injured a fifth in counter-terrorism raids in the town of Cambrils, about 120km from Barcelona. The situation there is now “under control”, said police.
  • In Barcelona, one Belgian has died, Belgium’s deputy prime minister Didier Reynders confirmed. Three Germans are also reportedly among the victims.
  • More than 80 people are reportedly injured and 15 are in serious condition. The injured include three Australians, three Dutch, and three Greeks – a woman and her two children. At least 18 nationalities were affected, including France, Venezuela, Ireland, Peru, Algeria and China, according to Spain’s civil protection agency.
  • The Spanish prime minister, Mariano Rajoy, said the whole country country stands in solidarity with Barcelona, blaming “jihadi terrorism”.
  • In Barcelona, a white Fiat van reportedly sped down the centre of the 1km-long road, which is usually packed with people, until it hit a newspaper kiosk and stopped.
  • Television pictures showed people lying on the ground and a crashed van, which had stopped on top of a Joan Míro mosaic in Las Ramblas – an area which is very popular with tourists.
  • Catalonia’s regional president, Carles Puigdemont, says there have been two arrests. Neither are the driver of the van.
  • Police released a photograph of the man alleged to have rented the van used in the attack. He is identified as Driss Oukabir.
  • Later it was reported that Oukabir handed himself into police after seeing his photograph being circulated online and in the media. He has reportedly denied being involved in the attack and told police his documents had been stolen.
  • Initially there were reports that one suspect had fled to a nearby bar, but this was later denied.
  • One witness told Spain’s TVE television he saw the suspect when the van stopped. “It was a person in their 20s, he is very young, brown hair, a slim face,” they said.
  • The city closed down metro stations in the area, with authorities telling people to stay away from the area.
  • Police officials have suggested there could be a connection between the attack and two explosions earlier in the day in a house in Alcanar, in which one person died and 16 people were injured.
  • World leaders, including Germany’s Angela Merkel and French president Emmanuel Macron, condemned the attack and sent condolences to the victims. Theresa May said: “The UK stands with Spain against terror.”
  • Donald Trump took to Twitter to call on the people of Barcelona to be “tough and strong”.
  • Boris Johnson, UK’s foreign secretary, said he is doing all he can to identify whether any British people need help in Barcelona.


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What we know so far about the Barcelona terror attack | NORTH INDIA KALEIDOSCOPE

Rajesh Ahuja

I am a veteran journalist based in Chandigarh India.I joined the profession in June 1982 and worked as a Staff Reporter with the National Herald at Delhi till June 1986. I joined The Hindu at Delhi in 1986 as a Staff Reporter and was promoted as Special Correspondent in 1993 and transferred to Chandigarh. I left The Hindu in September 2012 and launched my own newspaper ventures including this news portal and a weekly newspaper NORTH INDIA KALEIDOSCOPE (currently temporarily suspended).