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Dramatic new footage from Finsbury Park terror attack shows police holding back furious crowds as terror suspect is arrested

Mirror logo Mirror 19/06/2017 Lucy Clarke-Billings
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The 48-year-old man was arrested by London cops after he allegedly ploughed a van into Muslim worshippers in the early hours of today

Dramatic new footage shows furious crowds shouting out as the Finsbury Park terror attack suspect is bundled into the back of a police van. The video was captured by an eyewitness shortly after the 48-year-old man allegedly ploughed a van into Muslim worshippers in London. In the chaotic footage, officers can be seen telling people to "move back" as the suspect is led to the van, with his hands cuffed in front of him. Some onlookers film his arrest on their mobile phones, while many others point and yell during the incident in the early hours of today. The video shows an officer apparently checking the suspect's restraints, as he stands inside the back of the van, before telling him to sit down. Meanwhile, two other officers stand in front of the vehicle's open back doors.

© Reuters

The footage comes just hours after the hired van ploughed into worshippers leaving a mosque, in what witnesses said was a deliberate attack on Muslims. Prime Minister Theresa May today condemned the incident as "every bit as sickening" as other recent terrorist outrages. Earlier, a photograph emerged of the suspect looking battered and bruised after allegedly carrying out the attack shortly after midnight. Witnesses said the man was hit by people at the scene as they held him for at least 15 minutes before police arrived and arrested him. Ahmed Moor, of Liverpool, took the photo after he noticed the immediate aftermath of the van incident while on a night out with friends during a visit to London.

© Press Association

"There was about five to six people holding him down," Mr Moor told The Mirror. "Some people hit him while he was on the floor. "The Imam stopped them hitting him." The suspect was reportedly filmed 'blowing a kiss' and 'laughing' moments after the terrifying incident, which left 10 people injured. One man, who was already being given first aid at the scene before the van was driven into pedestrians, died following the terror attack. Police said it was not clear whether his death was directly linked. Eight others are in hospital after the incident, which occurred during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Two of these are in a very serious condition. Two others were treated at the scene.

© Reuters

Officers said all of the victims were Muslims. The attack came just weeks after a series of terrorist atrocities in Westminster, Manchester and London Bridge. One resident said he jumped out of the way as the van struck pedestrians. The man, who did not want to be named, said: "The gentleman went straight down this road, people were just conversing, talking, just doing what we're doing. "And he just came into all of us. There was a lot of people. I was shocked, shocked, shocked. There were bodies around me." Eyewitness Abdikadar Warfa said: "I saw a man underneath the van. He was bleeding. My friend said he had to lift the van.

"I was busy with a man who tried to escape. My friend said he said some words, but I didn't hear it. "They (people who were hit) were mostly young. They are very bad. "I tried to stop him (the suspect), some people were hitting him but I said stop him and keep him until the police came. "He was trying to run away but people overpowered him. He was fighting to run away." One witness, who wanted to be identified as Abdulrahman, which is not his real name, was at the scene as the horrific attack unfolded. He said: "I managed to get the driver of the van. He wanted to run away and was saying, 'I want to kill Muslims'.

© Reuters

"So he came back to the main road and I managed to get him to the ground and me and some other guys managed to hold him until the police arrived, for about 20 minutes I think, until the police arrived." Abdulrahman claimed the driver said, 'kill me,' as he was held on the ground. He added: "I said, 'tell me why did you try driving to kill innocent people?' "When he went into the [police] van he made gestures, he was laughing." Witnesses described seeing police giving emergency medical treatment to victims after the incident at 12.20am on Monday in Seven Sisters Road, north London. Many of the victims are believed to have just finished worshipping at the Finsbury Park mosque after breaking the Ramadan fast.

Related video: Man arrested as van hits mosque crowd (Provided by PA)

 

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The Metropolitan Police described the attack as a "major incident" and said one person was in custody and there were "a number of casualties". Salah Alamoudi said eight people were hit and up to three of them were in a "life-threatening" condition. He said that they had to hold the suspect on the ground for up to half an hour before police arrived. "The guy, I had to keep him at least half an hour. He was a strong guy. A big man," he said. "It was heartbreaking. It wasn't an accident."

A video posted online of the aftermath of the attack showed a scene of chaos as people tried to help the injured. One man could been seen giving CPR to a victim in the street while another man's head injury was treated with a makeshift dressing. People could be heard shouting and screaming amid the chaos and bloodstains were visible on the pavement.

© Rex Features

Witnesses at the scene said an elderly man who had collapsed at a bus stop was being tended to when the vehicle struck pedestrians. Mohammed Shafiq of the Ramadhan Foundation, a Muslim organisation which speaks out against extremism, said earlier: "According to eyewitnesses this was a deliberate attack against innocent Muslims going about their life. "We should make clear that if this attack is confirmed as a deliberate terrorist attack then this should be classed as an act of terrorism. "The British Muslim community requires all decent people to stand with us against this evil violence.

"Rampant Islamaphobia has been on the rise for a number of years and those on the far right have perpetuated hatred against Muslims. "They should be called out for their hatred. "The days ahead will be difficult, but with unity and tolerance we will prevail. We will not allow these far right extremists to divide our diverse communities. "Enough is enough, my condolences and prayers for all the victims and their families. They are in my prayers."

One man, who gave his name as Mohin, said his cousin was caught up in the incident. The 32-year-old told the Press Association: "There were a lot of people in the street, crossing the street, going to mosque for prayers, for forgiveness, just to pray and go home and eat. "They are doing their usual daily routine - they did not expect a van coming out of nowhere hitting them. "It was around 11.30pm, 12-ish. I've been living here all my life. As a community, everyone's a family here. "I initially thought it was my cousin."

© Twitter

Andrew, a courier who did not wish to give his surname, said he saw three people on the floor and at least one of them appeared to be in Muslim dress. The 45-year-old, of St Albans, Hertfordshire, said he was driving back from a night shift when he saw the aftermath of the collision. He said: "When I drove past slowly I could count three people on the floor and police were performing CPR on one of them. "The guy having CPR performed on him was in a gown, ethnic clothing." Pictures posted on social media showed more than a dozen emergency vehicles near the UKCG Help Centre at the junction of Seven Sisters Road and the A503 Tollington Road.

Finsbury Park mosque used to be infamous as the stamping ground of hook-handed hate preacher Abu Hamza. A number of terrorists were linked to the mosque, including shoebomber Richard Reid, who attempted to detonate explosives on an American Airlines flight from Paris to Miami in 2001. It was raided and shut down and later reclaimed by the local Muslim community, who have transformed it into a place which actively promotes better community relations across faiths. The suspected van driver in this morning's incident has been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder. He will be questioned by counter-terrorism officers.


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