Australia: One dead, two hurt in Melbourne stabbing attack

One person was confirmed dead, and two others were injured after a stabbing incident during rush hour in the Australian city of Melbourne, police said on Friday, as part of the city was placed on lockdown.

Victoria Police Police Superintendent David Clayton said the unnamed attacker is in “critical condition” at the hospital following the incident, which left one of the victims dead.

Video posted to Twitter and broadcast on television showed a man repeatedly swinging an object at two police officers in central Melbourne. One of the officers raises his weapon, a shot is heard and the man falls to the ground clutching his chest.

Police earlier said officers “initially responded to a report of a car on fire” in the city centre at around 4:20pm local time, as people began to leave work for the weekend.

“A man was arrested at the scene and has been taken to hospital under police guard in a critical condition,” the statement said.

Clayton later said that authorities are not looking for any other offender, adding that the investigation is at the “very early stage”, and that there is “no known link to terrorism” so far.

Paramedics said they assessed three people at the scene, one with a neck injury: “They are in a suspected critical condition.”

“A second person has been taken to hospital with a head injury. Condition not yet known. A third person has also been taken to hospital.”

Police warned people to avoid the area, but said they “are not looking for anyone further at this early stage.”

“The exact circumstances are yet to be determined at this stage. The area has been cordoned off,” police said.

Al Jazeera’s Andrew Thomas, reporting from Sydney, said there have been a number of attacks in Australia that at the time of the incidents “were thought to be” related to “terrorism”.

“[But] then, when the background of the person has been looked into, they’ve had mental health issues and no association with any known groups.”

The street where the car caught fire was the scene in January 2017 of a fatal incident in which a man drove his car at pedestrians at high speed, killing six people and wounding about 30.

Al Jazeera and news agencies

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