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Knife attack at Paris' biggest railway station leaves three wounded; suspect arrested (WATCH)

Three people were injured on Saturday in a knife attack at Paris’s Gare de Lyon railway station, a major travel hub, police said, adding that the suspected attacker had been arrested.

BREAKING Several wounded in knife attack at major Paris railway station; suspect arrested snt
First Published Feb 3, 2024, 1:46 PM IST

A knife attack shook Paris's Gare de Lyon railway station on Saturday morning, leaving three individuals injured and sparking concerns over public safety. The assailant, believed to be of Italian origin, initiated the assault in what appeared to be a random series of stabbings at approximately 8 a.m. local time.

The perpetrator, identified as a 32-year-old man born in Mali, was swiftly apprehended by law enforcement personnel. According to reports, the suspect presented Italian identity documents at the time of arrest, adding a layer of complexity to the unfolding incident. The attack comes just months before the Paris Olympics 2024, which is set to take place from July 26 to August 11.

"One person was seriously hurt, and two lightly wounded," said a police spokesman. "Officers arrived on the scene within minutes and the man was arrested. He was found to have an Italian driving license on him, and did not offer any motive for his actions. There were no slogans shouted."

The motive behind the attack remains unclear, as the assailant did not provide any rationale for his actions nor did he utter any slogans during the assault. The absence of an immediate motive underscores the urgency of ongoing investigations into the incident.

Gare de Lyon, the second busiest railway station in France accommodating up to 150 million passengers annually, was bustling with activity on the Saturday morning of the attack. The station was promptly evacuated, and all services were suspended in response to the unfolding emergency.

France has grappled with a series of terrorist incidents over the years, perpetrated by individuals associated with Islamic State and al-Qaeda. The country's history includes tragic events such as the November 2015 attacks in Paris, where 130 individuals lost their lives in coordinated acts of terrorism.

The 2016 assault in Nice, which claimed the lives of 86 people and left over 400 injured, remains etched in the nation's memory as one of the deadliest attacks on French soil. The assailant, a Tunisian immigrant, was subsequently neutralized by law enforcement.

Instances of extremist violence targeting civilians and law enforcement have persisted, including the murder of an 86-year-old Catholic priest during a church service in Normandy and a fatal stabbing incident at the Notre Dame basilica in Nice in October 2020.

As investigations into the Gare de Lyon attack continue, authorities are working diligently to ascertain the motives behind the assailant's actions and ensure the safety and security of citizens and visitors alike in the face of evolving security challenges.

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