Pedestrians becoming the latest victims of terror

BARCELONA [PeterPaul.ca] — Government minister Joachim Forn confirmed in a Twitter update that at least one person is dead and another 32 others wounded when a van reportedly jumped a pedestrian curb in the bustling city on Thursday.

Cataluña’s Interior Ministry classified the incident as a terror attack: “Terrorist attack confirmed. The protocol for these cases has been activated,” the ministry said on Twitter.

The Directorate General of Civil Protection urged pedestrians to stay away from the Plaza Cataluña area except in emergencies and released an information line [34932142124] for people to call. Facebook has activated their Safety Check where people can check in on friends during the incident. It is available here.

In a statement, Barcelona’s City Council suspended operations for the day just after activating a municipal emergency plan. “The Barcelona City Council has activated the basic municipal emergency plan for incidents with multiple victims due to the mass outrage that has occurred this afternoon on the Rambla de Barcelona,” the statement read.

The Mayor of Barcelona is “currently in the Department of Interior’s anti-terrorist coordination center, along with Deputy Mayor Janet Sanz, Jaume Collboni and Security Commissioner Amadeu Recasens.”

Vehicular attacks have occurred in New York, Berlin, Nice and London, becoming a hallmark of Islamic terror operatives all over the world in the age of tight security and restricted access.

“At the moment, it is recommended to avoid going to the Rambla de Barcelona and the surroundings of Plaza Cataluña.”

Police swiftly identified a possible suspect as Driss Oukabir but it is unclear whether he was under surveillance prior to Thursday’s attack.

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