The suspect in the Finsbury Park mosque attack in London reportedly shouted, “I’m going to kill all Muslims,” after a van was driven into a group people on Sunday night.
One person was killed and 10 were injured after a van collided into a crowd of pedestrians following prayers at the mosque.
“I’m going to kill all Muslims, I’m going to kill all Muslims,” a man was heard saying, The Telegraph reported. He was then tackled to the floor.
“He was screaming, he was saying, ‘I’m going to kill all Muslims, I’m going to kill all Muslims’. He was throwing punches,” one of the mosque goers, Abdulrahman Saleh Alamoudi, was quoted as saying. “Then we managed to get him on the floor. Then he was saying, ‘Kill me, kill me’. I said, ‘We are not going to kill you. Why did you do that?’ He wouldn’t say anything.”
Abdikadar Warfa, also a witness, described what he saw.
“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,” he said, according to the Telegraph. “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.”
The driver, a 48-year-old white man, was grabbed at the scene by locals and pinned down until police arrived, Reuters reported.
“The guy, I had to keep him at least half an hour. He was a strong guy. A big man,” Salah Alamoudi was quoted as saying.
“It was heartbreaking. It wasn’t an accident.”
“This morning, our country woke to news of another terrorist attack on the streets of our capital city: the second this month and every bit as sickening as those which have come before,” UK Prime Minister Theresa May told reporters outside her Downing Street office. “This was an attack on Muslims near their place of worship,” added May who later visited the mosque.
Video footage posted on social media appears to show a white man being detained by police and screaming.
Reuters contributed to this report.