London Bridge stabbing: Police fire shots at attacker, multiple people injured

Several people have been injured and one person has been detained as police in London deal with an incident on London Bridge.

Numerous police and ambulance vehicles are at the scene on the busy thoroughfare. Police have revealed that at least one person appears to have been shot during the incident. 

"We are in the early stages of dealing with an incident at London Bridge," police said in a statement.

@timtj

Police shouting for everyone to move away. Real panic setting in at London Bridge. Rumours of a shooting?

Sky News is reporting that one man was fatally shot by armed forces during the incident and at least five people are believed to have been stabbed in the area.

The BBC is reporting that two shots were fired and photographs posted on Twitter showed a truck parked across several lanes of traffic on the bridge.

Footage circulating on social media shows two men grappling on the ground before one of the men is dragged away by police officers. It appears that the second man is then shot by the officers.

London Bridge train station has been shut down due to the incident and nearby Borough Market has been evacuated.

Police were called at 1:58pm to a stabbing at premises near to London Bridge.

Emergency services attended, including officers from the Met and @CityPolice.

A man has been detained by police. We believe a number of people have been injured. Further info to follow.

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Chief of medical mission in Bolivia released by police

The Chief of the Cuban Medical Brigade in Bolivia, Dr. Yoandra Muro Valle, and the other Cuban aid workers detained by the Bolivian police have been released and have returned to the mission headquarters, the Minister of Public Health of Cuba, Dr. José Ángel Portal Miranda reported Friday evening.

Cuba denounced Friday to the international community her arrest.

Foreign Minister Bruno Rodriguez condemned the unjustified detention on Twitter, and he said that a vehicle outside her house had a license plate 28-CD-17 belonging to the US Embassy, and accused that diplomatic mission of participating in the police operation to arrest Doctor Yoandra Muro.

In a tweet, Cuban president Miguel Diaz-Canel demanded an end to the worsening of irresponsible anti-Cuban and hateful expressions, lies, defamations, and incitements to violence against Cuban aid workers, who have made their solidarity contribution to the health of this brotherly Bolivian people.

“Cuba denounces the harassment and mistreatment of our doctors in Bolivia.  In the name of no political ideology, hatred can harm those who have devoted themselves to giving life and health to the humble,” Diaz-Canel wrote.

Earlier on Friday, Cuba announced it would be withdrawing all of its aid personnel from Bolivia.

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Locked For 9 Years, Siblings Thought They Were Only People Left: Police

Sitting on the terrace at the pub, in the small village of Ruinerwold in the north Netherlands, the young man looked out of place. He had long, tangled hair and a dirty beard, wearing tattered clothing and appearing perpetually confused. There was something "unworldly" about him, as the bar's owner, Chris Westerbeek, would soon recount to Dutch news outlet RTV Drenthe, and when Westerbeek sat down to talk to him on Sunday, he learned why.

He had not been outside in nine years, he told Westerbeek.

The 25-year-old man was in desperate need of help, he said. He had managed to sneak out of the small, secret area where he and his adult siblings had been kept all that time, living in isolation in a farmhouse just outside Ruinerwold that appeared almost abandoned. He said he had never been to school and hadn't been to the barber in nearly a decade.

"He said he was the oldest and wanted to end the way they were living," Westerbeek said, according to the BBC.

On Tuesday, police answered the man's plea for help.

The family was rescued from the farmhouse this week after a tip from a "young man" who was "worried about the living conditions of his family" led authorities to search the property, police in the Netherlands province of Drenthe said in a statement. Upon arriving, police found a father and his six children living in the small, enclosed space, the statement said. A 58-year-old man described in Dutch media as a "handyman" was arrested on the property for refusing to cooperate with police, who said they do not know the man's relationship to the family at this time. The children told investigators they were all adults, which police said will "of course be further investigated."

Citing unnamed sources, RTV Drenthe reported they had been living under the impression that they were the only people left in the world. They were waiting for "the end of time," the news outlet reported.

Officials did not confirm reports regarding the family's beliefs, saying the case was still under investigation.

"Our primary concern is for the family members," a police spokeswoman told the Guardian. "What exactly happened in the farmhouse is still very unclear. We are exploring all possible scenarios."

From a distance, the farmhouse yard looked unkempt, with sheds and untrimmed shrubs, neighbors who lived down the road told local media. The home is a few dozen meters off the main road, accessible only by crossing a bridge over a small stream, then driving up a dirt road until reaching a gate. Sometimes the neighbors saw a dog, a goat and geese outside - but never children.

The local postal worker said he never once delivered a letter to the home.

"It's actually pretty strange, now I come to think about it," he told the Dutch news outlet Algemeen Dagblad, according to the BBC.

Inside, the family was self-sufficient, subsisting on vegetables from the garden and a goat, and possibly with help from the 58-year-old tenant, Dutch media reported.

He was the only one neighbors ever saw outside, coming and going in a blue Volvo, not talking to anyone.

"We always thought that one man was living in the house who was renovating the place," one neighbor told the Guardian. "We had no idea."

Some local carpenters knew the 58-year-old man as a gifted furniture maker and woodworker who kept his personal life to himself, the newspaper Dagblad van het Noorden reported. But his reclusive nature led some neighbors to grow suspicious of what might be going on behind the gate.

"No one ever came to his yard. We thought: It must have something to do with hemp cultivation or something," a neighbor who said she met the man only once told Dagblad van het Noorden. "But this? We never suspected this."

When police arrived to investigate, they found a secret area that had "a number of rooms with makeshift furnishings where a family was living an isolated existence," the local mayor, Roger de Groot, said during a news conference, the Guardian reported.

None of the family members were registered with the local government, police said, meaning there was no way to know they existed. The owner of the farmhouse, a prominent local figure, said she was "speechless," believing she had been renting the home to a single 58-year-old man for years and having "no idea" other people were inside, Algemeen Dagblad reported.

On Tuesday, Drenthe police said in a statement that the family had been taken to a doctor and is now being cared for. A "large scale" investigation is ongoing, and authorities are working with prosecutors to consider whether criminal charges will be brought in the case.

De Groot said authorities believe that the children's mother died years ago, but that there were too many questions remaining regarding how the family ended up living this way over the past nine years.

"I've never seen anything like it," de Groot said.

  • Published in World

Hong Kong protests: dozens arrested as government warns of 'dangerous situation'

Dozens of people, including a 12-year-old child, have been arrested after a night of escalating violence in Hong Kong during which police fired a warning shot near protesters and used water cannon for the first time.

Police said they arrested 86 people over the weekend for offences including unlawful assembly, possession of offensive weapons and assaulting police officers.

Sunday’s protests were the scene of the fiercest clashes yet between police and demonstrators since violence escalated in mid-June over a now-suspended extradition bill that would have allowed Hong Kong people to be sent to mainland China for trial.

Police fired water cannon and teargas in running battles with protesters, who threw bricks. Six officers drew their pistols and one officer fired a warning shot into the air, police said in a statement.

Mak Chin-ho, an assistant police commissioner, said violence by demonstrators had led to the police responding with force.

“We have seen an increase in the intensity and extensiveness of violence used by protesters. Their radical acts have intensified with more dangers and sometimes deadly weapons used including bricks, metal posts, long sticks, and petrol bombs,” said Mak.

Hong Kong’s government also condemned the protesters. “The escalating illegal and violent acts of radical protesters are not only outrageous, they also push Hong Kong to the verge of a very dangerous situation.” It said police would “strictly follow up” on illegal acts.

“Police will take relentless enforcement action to bring the persons involved to justice,” it said.

Hundreds of thousands of people had braved rain on Sunday to stage a peaceful, police-sanctioned march in Tsuen Wan, a part of the city noted for its links with triad members, after clashes on Saturday when police fired teargas, rubber bullets, pepper balls and sponge rounds at protesters.

By late afternoon on Sunday, about 100 riot police officers had formed into lines on two streets and protesters began to build makeshift barricades with plastic traffic barriers and bamboo rods in a standoff between the two sides. Just after 6pm local time police fired several rounds of teargas.

The crowd largely remained behind the barricades in the midst of choking smoke while some threw gas canisters back at the police. Protesters also threw bricks and Molotov cocktails at thepolice, with flames seen on the road between the two sides.

Minutes later, police launched another volley of teargas and charged at the protesters as the crowd dispersed. For the first time, police also used two anti-riot vehicles equipped with water cannon to chase away protesters. Several officers drew their guns on protesters and one fired a warning shot.

The scenes of worsening unrest provoked anger in China, where the microblog of the Communist party’s mouthpiece, the People’s Daily newspaper, condemned protesters who removed a national flag at the rally before the march and trampled on it. “Such provocation challenges the national dignity and hurt the feelings of 1.4 billion Chinese … It should pay a cost.”

The Hong Kong government said the act challenged the national authority and “allegedly violates” the national flag and national emblem ordinance.

The government-aligned Global Times, meanwhile, hit out at western media for its “biased” coverage of the protests, particularly accounts of how the Hong Kong police officer fired a warning shot.

The news outlet said “biased coverage has put the Hong Kong police in a dangerous position, as stories about police brutality have surfaced in recent weeks. Without considering facts, some Hong Kong reporters have stood by the anti-government protesters, abandoning the fundamentals of neutral and justified reporting”.

Some protesters said they were resorting to violence because the government had not responded to their peaceful demonstrations.

An anti-riot police vehicle equipped with water cannon clears a barricade from the roadAn anti-riot police vehicle equipped with water cannon clears a barricade from the road. Photograph: Jérôme Favre/EPA
 

“The more the government ignores us, the more we have to come out,” said Peggy Tai, who is in her 60s, earlier in the day.

After almost three months of continuous protests, demonstrators remained determined in their fight for political rights.

The wave of protests, which started in early June to oppose an extradition bill under which individuals could be sent to mainland China for trial, has morphed into a broader anti-government, pro-democracy movement.

Demonstrators have five demands: the complete withdrawal of the now-suspended extradition bill; the setting up of an independent body to investigate police violence; a halt to the characterisation of protests as “riots”; an amnesty for those arrested; and a resumption of political reform to allow the free election of Hong Kong’s leader and legislature.

Hong Kong’s leader, Carrie Lam, said last week she would establish platforms for dialogue although protesters dismissed her offer and said she needed to respond to their demands.

  • Published in World

Brazil bus hijacker shot dead by police sniper, hostages released

A man who hijacked a bus on a bridge in Brazil has been shot dead by police after holding the passengers hostage for hours.

The attacker seized the vehicle as it crossed the the Rio-Niteroi bridge with 37 on board at around 6.30am local time Tuesday, stopping it mid-way and prompting all lanes to be shut down by local authorities.

Also on rt.com Bus passengers held hostage as vehicle hijacked on bridge in Brazil (PHOTOS, VIDEOS)...

Police began negotiating with the hijacker and he had released several of the hostages before reportedly attempting to disembark from the vehicle while holding a gun to the head of a captive. Military police said that a sniper “neutralized” the suspect and “all the hostages were released unharmed.”

A spokesperson for the military police told local media that the man was carrying a toy gun. He had earlier threatened to set the bus alight and claimed to have been a former military police officer, but this was disputed by police.

The incident is being investigated by the Niteroi Homicide unit.

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Three explosions rock Sri Lankan city as police search for Easter attackers - reports

Three explosions have reportedly rocked a city on Sri Lanka’s eastern seaboard as the police and the army carry out searches targeting suspects from last weekend’s deadly bombings.

Police have been conducting searches across Sri Lanka in the aftermath of the deadly suicide bombings on churches and hotels which killed more than 250 people. Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) claimed responsibility for the bombings. 

DETAILS TO FOLLOW

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More Than 370 Arrested During Carnival in London (+Photos)

London, Aug 28 (Prensa Latina) At least 370 people were arrested for assault and possession of knives during the Notting Hill carnival in the centre of this capital, the Metropolitan Police said today.

'Law enforcement officers seized 36 knives during the celebration, which became a smokescreen for crime in the city,' Commander Dave Musker said Tuesday.

According to Musker, about 30 security personnel were injured while conducting the operations, although the number of detainees may increase.

In 2016, during the 50th anniversary of these carnivals, more than 450 arrests were made, 45 policemen were injured and 16 stabbings were committed, which is considered one of the deadliest.

Analysts insist that two years ago, former Deputy Victoria Borwick led a popular request to move the festival to a less populous place where people could be controlled, but the proposal did not materialize.

According to reports, the homicide rate in the UK has increased by approximately 40 per cent in the last three years, not including deaths caused by terrorist attacks.

At the end of 2017 statistics revealed a 13 per cent increase in crime compared to the previous year, mainly in this capital.

The Independent recently revealed that fatal stabbings occur every three days in London from gang fights.

The Notting Hill carnival is one of the most famous in the world, along with those of Rio de Janeiro and Santa Cruz de Tenerife, but unlike the latter, it has become a battleground for criminals and gang members.

  • Published in Culture

Ecuadorean Bus Crash Linked to Drug Trafficking

Colombian and Ecuadorean authorities have confirmed the bus that crashed Tuesday leaving 24 dead was carrying cocaine.  

At least 80 kilos of cocaine were found in the Colombian bus that crashed near Papallacta, Ecuador, police authorities announced Thursday.

RELATED: New Details on Bus Crash in Ecuador Creates Mystery

“There are 80 so far, but we haven’t finished counting. It is not the first time they have used tourist buses to smuggle drugs through the border,” a source in Colombia’s Office of the Attorney General told AFP.

The accident occurred Tuesday at 2:55 a.m. and caused 24 deaths and 14 injuries. The case appeared to be a simple transit incident, but the story became progressively strange as authorities realized most of the travelers didn’t have identification, and later learned they were participating in a free trip that covered transport, food, and lodging.   

Police investigations determined the 38 victims were used as drug mules without their knowledge.

Ecuadorean authorities have said they are not surprised by the discovery. This year over two tons of cocaine has been smuggled in international tour buses transporting “beneficiaries” of free trips.

Security forces in both Ecuador and Colombia are collaborating on the investigation to determine the causes of the accident and identify those responsible for the cargo.

Relatives and friends of the victims, most of who come from El Guabal neighborhood, in the city of Cali, claim the free trip was offered by a woman who lives in the community.

So far her identity has not been revealed, but authorities have been told she is a nurse. She was also on the bus during the accident and suffered severe injuries.   

This new mode of trafficking has been witnessed since early 2017 when half a ton of illicit substances were seized in the northern Ecuadorean city of Tulcan.

  • Published in World
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