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Paris, UK, Barcelona attacks: How vehicles have become new terror weapon

Vehicles have been used as weapons of terror several times over the past year

AFP/PTI  |  Barcelona 

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Police officers tell members of the public to leave the scene in a street in Barcelona, Spain.

A driver deliberately ploughed a van into pedestrians in Barcelona today, killing 13 people in what police called a "terrorist attack".

Vehicles have been used as weapons of terror several times over the past year, often by followers of the Islamic State (IS) group, attacking nations in the US-led coalition fighting the jihadists in Iraq and Syria.


The IS propaganda agency Amaq claimed that "soldiers" from the jihadist group carried out the attack, according to the Site Intelligence Group which monitors Islamist websites.

Police said they had arrested two suspects.

On July 14, 2016, Mohamed Lahouaiej-Bouhlel, a 31-year- old Tunisian, ploughs a 19-tonne truck into a Bastille Day crowd leaving a fireworks display in Nice on the Promenade des Anglais, killing 86 people on the famous beachfront avenue.

IS later claims Bouhlel as one of its followers.

- On June 19, 2007, Adam Dzaziri, a 31-year-old radicalised Islamist who had sworn allegiance to the IS, is killed when he rams a car loaded with guns and a gas canister into a police van on Paris's Champs-Elysees. No one else is injured.


- On August 19, 2017, a 36-year-old Algerian man, named as Hamou B., drives a BMW into soldiers outside a barracks in the western Paris suburb of Levallois-Perret, injuring six. After a car chase, police shot and wounded the suspect.

On March 22, 2017, a 52-year-old British convert to Islam, Khalid Masood, mows down pedestrians on Westminster Bridge near parliament and stabs a policeman, killing five people and injuring around 50 before being shot dead by police. The attack is claimed by IS.

On June 3, the British capital is hit again when three attackers strike pedestrians with a van and go on a stabbing spree wearing fake suicide vests in bars in the London Bridge area. Eight people are killed before the assailants are shot dead by police. The attack is also claimed by IS.

On December 19, 2016, Tunisian national Anis Amri, 24, hijacks a truck and slams into a crowd of people at a Christmas market in Berlin, killing 12 people and injuring 48.

Amri is shot dead by Italian police in Milan four days later after travelling through several European countries. IS claims responsibility.

An April 7, 2017 a truck attack in the Swedish capital kills five people, including an 11-year-old Swedish girl, a Briton, and one Belgian. Fifteen are injured.

An Uzbek national, Rakhmat Akilov, 39, confesses to using a stolen beer truck to mow down pedestrians on Stockholm's busiest shopping street Drottninggatan. According to Uzbek police he had tried to join IS in 2015.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, August 18 2017. 08:36 IST
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