Initial speculation suggested “gang violence” was responsible, but the Metropolitan Police have now said that terrorism is being investigated as a motive.
Eyewitnesses reported major road blocks for hours, as well as a body and/or a body bag lying on the pavement. The deceased is believed to be in her 60s. Police also added that the attacker’s “mental health” is believed to be a “significant factor” and a “major line of enquiry”.
The attack comes on the same day the Met Police announced 600 extra, armed police officers for London and just days after the head of London’s police said that an attack on the British capital was a matter of “when, not if”.
Further eyewitness reports obtained by the Mail say they saw a “man flee on a motorbike” as well as harrowing testimony about “a woman – aged around 25 – with blood pouring from her back”.
The witness added: ‘They all spoke Spanish so I guess they were a group. I only saw the victim and the girl with the arm stabbed from that group.
“I just saw blood just next to her. She was lying on the floor with a friend hugging her.”Police issued the following statement several hours after the incident: “Police were called at 22:33 hours on Wednesday, 3 August to reports of a man seen in possession of a knife injuring people at Russell Square, WC1. Officers attended the scene along with the London Ambulance Service. Up to six people were found injured at the location.