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Armed man sets Swiss train carriage on fire, stabs passengers with knife; 7 injured

The attack is the latest in a string of violent and deadly assaults in Europe in recent months, with many claimed by the jihadist Islamic State group.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
August 13, 2016 10:08:11 pm

A man armed with a knife reportedly set a Swiss train carriage on fire using flammable liquid and stabbed six passengers on Saturday, said the police, according to reports in AFP. Six people were injured in the attack, including a six-year-old child. The injured have been hospitalised.

The man, a 27-year-old Swiss citizen, carried out the attack on a train travelling in Switzerland’s far east, along its border with Liechtenstein, and was also injured, regional police in St Gallen said in a statement.

The attack is the latest in a string of violent and deadly assaults in Europe in recent months, with many claimed by the jihadist Islamic State group.

According to AFP, the motive behind Saturday’s attack is not clear and is hard to make a comment on immediately. “According to the information we have for the time being, the 27-year-old Swiss man poured out a flammable liquid … (which) caught fire,” police said, adding that the man “was also armed with at least one knife”.

The attack had taken place at around 2:20 pm (local time) near the Salez station on a train running between Buchs and Sennwald and that some of the injuries were serious. Seven people including the suspected attacker were admitted to various hospitals with burn and stab wounds, the statement said.

The victims included two men aged 17 and 50, three women aged 17, 34 and 43 and the six-year-old child. Dozens of people were on the train at the time of the attack, the police statement said.

A massive contingent of rescue workers rushed to the scene, including police, firefighters, ambulances and three rescue helicopters. The Salez station remains closed, and police said replacement buses had been set up. Saint Gallen prosecutors have opened a criminal investigation into the attack.

This is the latest in the list of terror attacks that shook Europe in the year 2016. In January 2015, a jihadist assault on the Charlie Hebdo satirical newspaper in Paris left 12 dead while another four died in an attack on a Jewish supermarket in the city.

In November 2015, a coordinated jihadist attack claimed by IS in Paris left 130 people dead.

On March 22 this year, suicide bombers struck Brussels airport and a metro station in another coordinated jihadist attack claimed by IS near the European Union headquarters, killing 32 people.
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On July 14, a Tunisian man rammed a truck into crowds of revellers in the southern French city of Nice, killing 85 people.

Swiss neighbour Germany has also seen a string of attacks in recent weeks.

In July there were two attacks by migrants in the southern state of Bavaria — an axe rampage on a train and a suicide bombing.

In Munich, an 18-year-old German-Iranian also went on a gun rampage in a shopping mall, leaving nine people dead.

In Belgium, meanwhile, a lone gunman armed with a Kalashnikov and other arms in August 2015 opened fire on a train but was overpowered by passengers.

(With AFP inputs)

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