Terror Strikes Australia: One Killed, Three Injured

A Special Operations Officer in a bomb suit at the scene of yesterday's terrorist attack in Melbourne.
A special operations officer in a bomb suit at the scene of yesterday’s terrorist attack in Melbourne. (Photo: MAL FAIRCLOUGH/AFP/Getty Images)

A gunman killed a civilian and wounded three police officers after taking a woman hostage in Melbourne, Australia. Police are treating the incident as an “”act of terrorism.”

During the hostage crisis, a man called 7 News Melbourne and told them “This is for I.S. This is for Al Qaeda.” A woman could reportedly be heard screaming in the background.

The call is thought to have come from within the building where the hostage siege was taking place.

Yacqub Khayre was shot dead by armed police after a standoff lasting several hours. He had previously been acquitted of a plot to bomb a Sydney army base in 2009.

The hostage was rescued unharmed.

Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack via its Amaq News Agency. ISIS described Khayre as a “soldier” of the Islamic State.

Khayre was known to the police for “a whole range of offending” including drugs, violent crime and arson, according to The New York Times. He was on parole at the time of the attack.

In an unrelated incident, a bomb threat was linked to a flight in New South Wales. Police and staff of the Virgin Australia flight evacuated the plane as soon as it touched down in Albury. Staff told passengers to run from the aircraft as fast as possible and many jumped from the doors to the tarmac.

Police arrested a 30 year-old male passenger who has since been charged with making a death threat and giving false information.

Elliot Friedland
Elliot Friedland is a research fellow at Clarion Project.

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