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Amsterdam stabbing assault: Police examine terror as potential motive for Central Station stabbings

AMSTERDAM – Two individuals wounded in a knife assault on the Dutch capital’s busy principal railway station on Friday are each Americans who have been visiting the Netherlands, the U.S. ambassador mentioned Saturday, as police investigated potential motives, together with the chance it was an extremist act.

Police shot and wounded a 19-year-old Afghan man instantly after the assault and are questioning him as a suspect.

A dramatic photograph captured by a passerby reveals two law enforcement officials pointing their pistols at a person sporting denims and sneakers mendacity on the bottom inside a tunnel within the station.

Ambassador Pete Hoekstra issued a written assertion saying embassy officers had been in contact with the victims or their households. Police say they’ve critical however not life-threatening accidents. Authorities didn’t disclose the identities of the victims.

“We want them a speedy restoration and are working carefully with the Metropolis of Amsterdam to supply help to them and their households,” Hoekstra mentioned.

Police say they’re nonetheless making an attempt to ascertain a purpose for the assault, together with whether or not it was motivated by extremism.

An announcement issued late Friday by Amsterdam’s metropolis council mentioned that the Individuals didn’t seem to have been victims of a focused assault.

Preliminary police inquiries didn’t point out that the victims have been chosen intentionally or with a transparent purpose, Amsterdam authorities mentioned. “The investigation continues to be underway, and all situations stay open for the investigation workforce,” the Metropolis Corridor assertion mentioned.

Police mentioned in an announcement Saturday that the Afghan man was being questioned within the hospital with the assistance of an interpreter. His identification has not been launched, however police say he has a German residency allow.

Agence France-Presse quoted a police spokesman as saying he didn’t know the victims and had not focused them particularly.

The stabbings occurred shortly after midday (6 a.m. EDT) on Friday at Central Station in downtown Amsterdam.

“One thing occurred, we do not know but what, however throughout that two individuals have been stabbed and one individual with a knife in his hand walked away and he was shot by police,” police spokesman Rob van der Veen mentioned Friday.

Central Station is a busy entry and exit level for guests to Amsterdam, with common trains linking it to the town’s Schiphol Airport. The station is utilized by an estimated 250,000 vacationers every day, BBC Information experiences.

The station is patrolled by armed police and different safety employees.

© 2018 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved. This materials might not be revealed, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Related Press contributed to this report.

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