While most parts of the world have been recuperating from havoc caused by natural calamities, gruesome terrorist attacks continue to jolt the developed as well as third world countries every now and then. On Tuesday, 3 p.m, on Halloween, eight people were killed and over a dozen injured when a 29 year old man driving a rented pick-up truck drove down a bi-cycle path near the World Trade Centre in Manhattan, New York City. Identified as Sayfullo Habibullaevic Saipov, investigations by the law enforcement sources reported the assailant to be hailing from Uzbekistan in Central Asia and living in the US since 2010.
As reported by CNN, a senior law enforcement officer told the media that they had found a note inside the truck written in English mentioning the attack as done in the name of ISIS. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said, “This was an act of terror, and a particularly cowardly act of terror, aimed at innocent civilians, aimed at people going about their lives who had no idea what was about to hit them.” It’s not new; vehicles have been used as weapons in quite a few terrorist strikes in the recent years, including the horrifying incidents in London and France.
As told to media, the suspect, driving a Home Depot rental truck drove to the West Side Highway in lower Manhattan for several blocks and after crashing into a school bus, he exited the vehicle. According to the NYPD, while demonstrating mock firearms, he was shot by a police officer in the abdomen. Officials said that a pellet gun and paintball gun were recovered from the spot. An Uber representative confirmed that the accused, Saipov worked as a driver for the company and had also passed a background check. Currently, he has been banned from the app and Uber has been in touch with the FBI and law enforcement since then, cooperating with the investigations.
Online records show that Saipov, the suspect, had multiple interactions with law enforcement in several states. He had been issued traffic citations in Missouri and Pennsylvania and was also arrested by Missouri State Highway Patrol in October 2016. A guilty plea was entered on his behalf as he didn’t appear in court for the proceedings.
News footage displayed several mangled bi-cycles on the popular bike path where the incidence occurred and physicians were wounded in the background. According to New York Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro, six people were pronounced dead at the scene and two more declared dead at the hospital. At least a dozen people seriously injured were transported to the hospital.
A spokesman for Home Depot confirmed that one of their company’s rental trucks was part of an incident and reassured that the company is “cooperating with authorities” in the investigation.
Some of the latest developments reported are as follows:
- Argentina’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs tweeted that 5 Argentine citizens were killed in the attacks. The Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister for Belgium reported the victimization of a Belgian national in the incidence.
- One of the law enforcement sources reported to CNN that the suspect, who was shot by police, mostly lived in New Jersey and recently moved to Paterson. He is out of surgery, though it is unknown if he has reported anything to the police.
- Not in U.S, President Donald Trump wrote on Twitter, that the incident “looks like another attack by a very sick and deranged person.” He later tweeted “My thoughts, condolences and prayers to the victims and families of the New York City terrorist attack. God and your country are with you!”
In honour of freedom and democracy, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office directed One World Trade Centre to be lit in red, white and blue.
Article by Rochita Roy.