Australian police treating deadly knife attack as terrorism

Australian police treating deadly knife attack as terrorism

The man stabbed three people, one fatally, before he was shot by police.

Video shows the man attempting to slash police officers with a large knife before falling to the ground.

"Three people have been stabbed, unfortunately one of them is deceased at the scene", he said.

"We'll keep an open mind as to whether there's any link", Clayton said.

The message over the loudspeakers says: "This is Victoria Police, please evacuate the area".

Mr Hair said two civilians became involved as well as two police, trying to stop the man from his attack.

A second person suffered a head injury and has been taken to hospital.

As a truck blazed in the background, a man flailed a long knife at police officers, who backpedalled desperately.

Victoria Police said that the attack in the Melbourne CBD is now being treated as a terrorism incident.

Clayton said police had arrived at Bourke Street, a busy shopping thoroughfare, in response to a vehicle fire.

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The incident comes as a man is on trial for a 2017 attack on the same street which left six people dead.

Later, a man was arrested after he was shot at the scene and taken to a hospital under police guard in a critical condition.

Police said officers "initially responded to a report of a auto on fire" in the city centre at 4:20 pm local time, but discovered at the scene that members of the public had been stabbed.

A third person has also been taken to hospital, although the nature of their injuries is not yet known.

In a series of tweets, Daniel Andrews, the premier of Victoria state, called the incident "an act of terror struck the heart of our city, in a place where past wounds have still not healed".

One witness told the Herald Sun that bystanders were calling to police, "shoot him, shoot him".

One witness claimed the assailant was yelling "allahu akbar" and is believed to be known to counter-terrorism agencies, the Melbourne Age reports.

Witnesses said they heard a big bang and images appeared to show a vehicle on fire.

"I kept watching", said witness Tony Nguyen, after what he described as a "car bomb".

Anyone with information is being asked to make a statement at the West Melbourne Police Station.

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