Australian police say stabbing attack linked to terrorism

SYDNEY (AP) — A knife-wielding man stabbed two people, one fatally, in Australia’s second-largest city on Friday in an attack likely linked to terrorism, police said.

The attack during the afternoon rush hour brought central Melbourne to a standstill.

Police said the man got out of a vehicle, which then caught fire, and attacked three bystanders with a knife before being shot by police. The suspect died later at a hospital. One of the victims also died and the two others were hospitalized.

Victoria state police Commissioner Graham Ashton said the suspect, who was originally from Somalia, was known to police and the incident is being treated as terrorism.

State police Superintendent David Clayton said police responded to reports of a burning vehicle.

Officers were confronted near the burning car by a man “brandishing a knife and threatening them” while passers-by called out that people had been stabbed, he said.

Clayton said investigators did not believe there were any other assailants. The man was shot in the chest by police.

Clayton said a bomb squad was making the scene safe.

Victoria police tweeted a request for witnesses to speak to police and share any images that might help the investigation.

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