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A Patterned Terrorist Attack. Aired 3-4a ET
Aired June 19, 2017 - 03:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
[03:00:00] UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is CNN breaking news.
GEORGE HOWELL, HOST, CNN: Welcome to our viewers here in the United States and all around the world. I'm George Howell, live in Atlanta.
MAX FOSTER, HOST, CNN: And I'm Max Foster at Finsbury Park at North London, where Brits are waking up to news what the prime minister describes as another potential terrorist attack. A van drove into a crowd of people. They were leaving a mosque here. One man was killed and at least eight others were wounded.
The prime minister will chair an emergency meeting on Monday morning.
Investigators going through the van. Police say there's only one suspect in this instance. They're not looking for anyone else. The witnesses gave CNN this video of the man being detained, police say they arrested a 48-year-old man.
Now London's Mayor, Sadiq Khan, goes a bit further than prime minister and confirms it is a horrific terror attack. He says extra officers are supporting the Muslim community here in the U.K. and they're really calling for more security at every mosque actually.
OK. Phil Black is here. He came only in the night, didn't you? At the time there's a lot of confusion but now you can probably describe as anger.
PHIL BLACK, CORRESPONDENT, CNN: I think so. Yes, in times of the local reaction, yes, absolutely. There is a great deal of anger that this has happened. There is some also some anger about the police response the media coverage, the fact that people here believe the second a long time to call it a terrorist act.
But we've been waiting for the police to confirm that they believe the motive was behind this. That said, all the witness accounts we heard do seem to indicate that this was deliberate. And when you hear the stories of the man deliberately swerving into the crowd...
FOSTER: Yes, talk to us what you know happened.
BLACK: So what we understand it was just after midnight, crowds of people were coming out of local mosques because of late night prayers during Ramadan season. And at some point this white van came along the road, appears to have deliberately swerve in to crowds of people, run them over, came to a stop and it was at that people a couple of bystanders rushed over and essentially wrestled this guy to the ground.
FOSTER: Pulled him out of the van.
BLACK: Pulled him out of the van.
FOSTER: Later he went to be carry on, right?
BLACK: Indeed. The way they told the story is that he resisted quite fiercely. He fought back, he punch, he beat, he swore at them. And according to one of the witnesses that we've spoken to one of the men who wrestled him to the ground he said the whole time he was holding him on the ground this man was saying "you deserve this."
BLACK: You guys deserve this. So, again, that all points to this being deliberate, it doesn't seem too much doubt there but the key question is motive of course, what was driving this man. The police say that the counterterrorism command is in charge of the investigation.
FOSTER: And the chief is speaking in about 10 minutes time so what do you looking for from them?
BLACK: Well, that key point of motive of course.
BLACK: It does seem that this was one man acting alone determined to cause harm and kill people here today, there seems to be no doubt about that. But what was he doing this, that's the key point. Police as we say a lot of talk about terrorism from politicians, police counterterrorism command officers are involved. But they've also said that this man will be assessed for mental health issues as well.
So they are, the investigation is still pointing...
FOSTER: But they are keeping open there is other attacks that have been around the world where everyone assume it's the terror attack because of the nature of it but ultimately it ended up with someone with mental health problem.
BLACK: That can -- that can happen indeed. I mean, in this case it's one man with a vehicle, that in itself is not enough to say this was terror.
BLACK: But as we say based upon the witness accounts the things that this man has said to have said to these people... FOSTER: Yes.
BLACK: ... it does point to that sort of feeling.
FOSTER: The Muslim (Inaudible) have been calling for extra security at mosques. The police providing some resources there. How would you interpret all this messaging from ministers because, you know, they want to call it terrorism as close as they can, but that takes it to a level where extra resources are coming into the system as well. So, a delicate balancing at this morning.
BLACK: It is. I do think that everyone wants to call this for what it is. I don't think there's too much doubt about that whether it's politicians or journalist or the police. But they just has to be an investigation process here to determine precisely what this man's motivations were.
But officials will be worried about this there's no doubt because in the wake of the more recent Islamist terror attacks here in London and Manchester as well, of course, there's been a great deal of tension.
But a great deal of efforts to stress this is a city as a country really.
BLACK: Still unified its tolerance, it does not blame the Muslim community with something like this obviously cops well against the grain of that sort of talk. But when we speak to local members of this community they say it fits in with what they've been experienced. And that is...
[03:04:57] FOSTER: More Islamomophobia.
BLACK: ...more Islamophobia, more hates, more abuse in the street in circle.
FOSTER: When this was unfolding last night it was outside, you know, near a mosque. It was very crowded. Just describe this area, it's a very diverse area. Some people are saying that, you know, it wasn't necessarily Muslim to target here. It's true to say it's a diverse area, right? But at that time of night in that area that that's where there are many Muslims.
BLACK: At that time of night outside of mosque.
BLACK: Appearing Ramadan, this is when people are going to pray, it's when they are getting together to break the (Inaudible) circle, that's what happening around here.
FOSTER: And they were identifiably Muslim as well because of what they're wearing. (CROSSTALK)
BLACK: A lot of them dressed wearing Muslim dresses and so forth.
BLACK: And clothing hats that sort of thing as well. Because this is an incredible diverse area. It's an area where you will get where the Muslim community, for example, the Orthodox Jewish community they cooperate a fairly close ties in this particular neighborhood but it is as diverse as any neighborhood in that really.
FOSTER: OK. Phil, thank you very much indeed. Phil was describing there, someone we spoke to earlier, someone who saw what happened and tackle this man actually pulled him out of the van, an incredible story unfolding. And here it is in his words.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SAEED HASHI, WITNESS: I was at the first people who came out from the mosque because it was wearing outside. It was traffic in the mosque, so I was with first who came out. We crossed the road to take our bus and waiting on another friend who was Muslim one friend. And we was watching the bus coming from that direction obviously, we see the van speeding.
FOSTER: Through a crowd?
FOSTER: Through a crowd or from the road.
HASHI: No, he was till speeding because I was looking at the bus.
HASHI: So the bus was speeding so I thought he wants to cross the traffic light or something like this meet from work.
HASHI: So I suddenly he turned back to the mosque. So I was -- that sudden I was shocked and we were screaming and he -- first a woman, old Somali woman in her 60's and another two Moroccan or an Algerian guy. Then he drove a bus, he hit another three or four, five, six, seven and suddenly the car stopped. So run up -- we one up to him. We manage to get him out of the car.
FOSTER: You ran up to the van?
FOSTER: You pulled the guy out.
HASHI: Yes. But he punch me one the head, it's the marks there.
HASHI: And I called my friends, my friends they came running. They get him out of the car because one of my friends he kicks from the other side and then he push him from the (Inaudible) and we get him out of the car. And he start fighting with us who was a bit muscle guy.
HASHI: And police pass, there's a police pass they saw the situation they didn't stop. We were this...
FOSTER: Police pass but they didn't know what was going on.
HASHI: Yes. They thought it was a fight or something. We stopped the guy and we put him on the floor and people called police and he bit me on my thumb as well. Here as well there's a...
FOSTER: Yes. You got like some bruising and injuries that you got your t-shirt cut.
FOSTER: This was during the scaffold here.
FOSTER: There were three of you, right?
FOSTER: You got him to the ground and you held him there for how long?
HASHI: For 10 ten minutes.
FOSTER: Until the police came.
FOSTER: Describe that 10 minutes.
HASHI: He was --he was really shouting and aggressive, but words or something like that. So we didn't talk to him but he was just spitting on us.
FOSTER: But there were crowds gathering around you.
FOSTER: And obviously people where angry.
HASHI: They were angry, yes, we just makes him not to touch him on that.
FOSTER: What you're describing here is that people want to attack him, right?
FOSTER: But you were managing to keep people away from him.
FOSTER: We worry that the police wouldn't come and we want -- you knew the police won't...
HASHI: We worry the police didn't come and the guy is going to get irritant the situation get to tend worse.
FOSTER: Yes. I can't imagine what that was like going through it. But looking back on that, what do you think about how you reacted and what the atmosphere was like there.
HASHI: The atmosphere is full of anger and because it's the last 10 days of Ramadan, we're here for worshipping and not for anything else. And at this late time and we've got work to do as well in the same time.
FOSTER: I mean, the atmosphere this morning is one of some anger. Because they're not necessarily pleased with the way it's being covered or the way politicians are talking about this incident.
FOSTER: What are your thoughts about that?
HASHI: We haven't seen nothing. We haven't seen helicopter above us, we haven't seen police with a gun. They should come with the gun immediately because it's a terror acts.
FOSTER: You were saying, there was a different response to this as there have been to other terror attacks.
HASHI: Yes. Soft -- I can scratch something to the response of the police.
FOSTER: But you're a hero today, do you feel like a hero? Or do youe feel...
HASHI: No, I feel like I did what I could, the best to raise him from the dead and in the same time it is...
FOSTER: Well, you saved lives.
HASHI: Yes. FOSTER: If this guy was still alive. And he's driven, we think intentionally into a crowd.
HASHI: Yes. He was trying to...
HASHI: And he wanted to carry on.
HASHI: Yes, he was trying to carry on. But I manage him, there were first one who run and...
FOSTER: Was he trying to reverse the vehicle?
FOSTER: So he could carry on with them because we're told he didn't have a knife with him.
HASHI: Yes. He didn't have a knife. Of course I'm the one who was inside of this car.
[03:10:02] FOSTER: It wasn't easy therefore. So this could have been so much worse...
FOSTER: ... if he could have carry on this attack.
HASHI: Of course, I've got only injuries but thank God that guy doesn't get more than that.
FOSTER: Well, I think you're an incredibly pretty (Inaudible) for doing what you did. Do you think it was instinctive or did you think about what you did? You just got like you want to stop him. What went on at that moment?
HASHI: To be honest I was in a state of shock, state of shock.
HASHI: So I didn't know what...
HASHI: yes, automatically. And also, the other that you do, did you manage to keep him alive.
FOSTER: And that man -- the police now will have him and they can get to the bottom of why he did this. So that's really important.
HASHI: Yes, true. There were people who was a guy from the mosque they were bringing bottles.
FOSTER: That want to attack him
FOSTER: How much longer do you think he would have been out to keep him safe?
HASHI: No more than 10 minutes.
FOSTER: OK. Well, our thoughts are with you, the whole community but particularly with you and your heroism last night.
HASHI: Just heading to the hospital now.
FOSTER: Well, OK.
HASHI: Thank you very much.
FOSTER: We appreciate you so. Thank you very much indeed.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
FOSTER: That's one incredible story that unfolded just eight hours ago. And we're now waiting to hear the very latest on the investigation. In the few minutes there will be an update outside New Scotland Yard. We're going to bring that to you next.
[03:15:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is CNN breaking news.
FOSTER: Park in -- we're in Fisnbury Park in north London, we're on the police line and we're going to recap you what happened here just about eight hours ago.
One person died after a van drove into pedestrians in north London here. At least eight other people have been taken to hospitals as well. The mayor of London has described this horrific terrorist attack.
CNN has exclusive new video from a witness to this incident. It's sad to show the allege driver in the van which was used to ram into the crowd the suspect was tackled by witnesses and held until police arrived. He's now in custody.
The Prime Minister Theresa May says police are treating the incident as a potential terrorist attack. She's chairing an emergency meeting very shortly. Police said they have arrested the van driver who's a 48-year-old man.
Counterterrorism (Inaudible) is investigating this instance, police say they're not seeking other suspect but the investigation continues. And we're just going to have an update on that any minute from Scotland Yard. So we're going to watch that for you and bring it to you live.
In the meantime, we're going to speak to Ian Lee who's going to describe you exactly what we know happened overnight. Ian?
IAN LEE, INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT, CNN: Well, Max, right now I'm at New Scotland Yard where we're waiting for the deputy assistant commissioner to come out and give us that briefing about exactly what police believe what happened and what they know.
But last night I was on the scene shortly after it happened and I was able to speak to a number of witnesses. And what they describe to me it started when an elderly man lost consciousness on the ground, a crowd formed around him to try to help and that's when that van careened into them killing one person and injuring eight others.
And one witness told me how they had to pull someone from underneath the van out and the driver getting out of the car trying to escape but the people around there were able to detain him although he did give up quite a fight in the process, and they were able to hand him over to police.
And once they arrived the police quickly cordoned off the area and started this investigation. I saw a number of ambulances and fire trucks moving in and out of that cordon in the very beginning bringing people to three different hospitals around in the area.
But right now they're trying to figure out what exactly happened. So One of the key things here though, Max, is that they were able to capture this man alive, the driver, so they will be able to interrogate him to find out what exactly happened.
And also speaking to eyewitnesses they said that there were other people involved. Now, the police haven't said anything about that. Some eyewitnesses said there were two people in the van, others said there were three.
So we're so we're hoping to get more clarification about that here when this press conference takes place. Still a lot of questions in these early hours, Max.
FOSTER: There really is and here across the questions about why they haven't called it terror yet in order for the police to do that. They've got a need to have some answers from the interrogation, right, in order to take it to that level. What are we looking for here?
LEE: That's right. And luckily, for them, they were able to capture him alive so they will be able to find out what the motive is behind that and also what is his mental state. But all morning, last night the people out from they keep saying that this was a terror attack.
And now we're hearing from government officials saying that is a suspected terrorist attack. Although we heard from London Mayor Sadiq Khan saying that he's calling this a terrorist attack. And that is going to be probably be the first question that's asked to -- or first thing we hear from the police spokesman what was this attack, it was an attack.
Was this person have mental issues or was this what a lot of people have already been saying it's a terrorist attack. But again, it's up to the police. They're the ones who determined what exactly happened and how events unfolded, Max.
FOSTER: There was very quick response though, presumably, when it happened. We're told that the guy was held out for 10 minutes. So the police were there within 10 minutes.
LEE: Yes, There -- that's one thing that we heard from different witnesses. They said that they were able to get them -- to detain him and hold him down, it was violent -- he was acting violently toward them and then they said they called the police. Some people complain they said the that the police didn't show up in time.
One witness said that they actually flagged down a police officer who wasn't responding on the scene to come and help them with it. You can see in that video, a very intense situation and a lot of angry people around this man. This 48-year-old man as the police are trying to put him in the police van.
[03:19:59] Also, you know, talking to some of the witnesses they said, you know, they were trying to keep the scene peaceful once the people were on the scene to take control of it. But a really tense time there and intense time in the aftermath.
A lot of people believing that the police just weren't doing enough to protect their community from all the anti-Islamic rhetoric that they've been hearing.
FOSTER: And one of the early statements we got from them was about giving more resources to protect people marking Ramadan, so is that correct. So they are more police presumably most of the day.
LEE: Yes, but this comes with a police force that's already stretched than they have been dealing with a number of attacks. And so they had many places where they've had to beef up security, beefing up security at all the mosques which also take considerable resources.
But it's something that the community has been demanding, they feel that they're vulnerable and they want these more resources. I ask one man how do you move forward that have to the things. And he said, he was afraid and that you just need to be more vigilant to go out, not alone. Go out in pairs.
But this is a community, though, that while we did see a lot of solidarity today within the community, a diverse community in that area. But there's a lot of fear about what would happen next especially with a lot of the harsh rhetoric that we're seeing.
FOSTER: OK. Ian there in the Scotland Yard. Thank you. We're going to go straight back to Ian as soon as we get the counterterrorism officers in front of the microphone. They are going to give that briefing. It won't be very long I think but, you know, all eyes on whether or not they are going to call it terror, whether they've managed to reach that point in terms of the interrogation of the suspect they got of this 48-year-old man.
Meanwhile, more testimony coming in all the time from people who witnessed the attack, were involved with it or just overlooked it. Have a listen to this?
Let's go to the press conference, actually I'm told that's about to start. OK, so we got the microphone set up. We are waiting for him to come out. This the scene in Finsbury Park. Actually there he is about to speak.
NEIL BASU, DEPUTY ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER, COUNTER-TERRORISM POLICING: Good morning ladies and gentlemen there (Inaudible). Sadly, Londoners are waking up to the news of another dreadful incident in the capital that has left a number of people seriously injured.
The attack unfolded once the man was already receiving first aid from public at the scene. And sadly that man has died. Any causative link between his death and the attack will fall part of our investigation. But it's too late to say that his death was the result of this attack.
Our thoughts are absolutely with all of those affected by the incident at Seven Sisters Road and their family, friends and the wider community. No matter what the motivation for this attack proves to be we are keeping an open mind.
This is being treated as a terrorist attack and the counter-terrorism command is investigating it. This was an attack on London and all Londoners. And we should all stand together against extremist whatever that cause.
From 21 minutes past midnight this morning, police received a number of calls to Seven Sisters Road following a van collided with pedestrians. Officers were in the immediate vicinity at that time. Actually as the attack unfolded and they responded instantly.
Additional officers were on the scene within 10 minutes. One man, as I've said, was pronounced dead at the scene. And all the victims were from the Muslim committee.
I'd like to praise the police officers who immediately responded who gave a lifesaving treatment to the scene. But also very much those members of the public who assisted before and after this incident.
Also at the scene, detained by members of that community, was the man suspected of being the driving during this attack. He has been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder. I would like to thank those people who helped in detaining the man and
worked with officers to come in quickly get him into our custody. Their strength in the circumstances is commendable.
This investigation is ongoing and we're working fast to know the full details of how and why it worked place.
At this early stage of the investigation, no other suspects have been identified or reported to police. And there were no reports of any police having suffered any knife injuries. The van used has been examined but specialist officers but nothing that would pose a risk to the public was firm within it.
[03:25:02] Extra policing resources have been deployed across London in order to reassure communities, especially those observing Ramadan at this very sensitive term.
I would urge everyone to remain calm and remain vigilant. I ask the public with any information about this incident or anything that causes concern or suspicious to call the police on 0800,789-321. That's 0800-789-321.
Obviously, this is a very early stage of the investigation. However, as of when I can make more information available, I will. This has been an incredibly challenging time for London and the emergency services are stretched. Nevertheless, we will all do absolutely everything we can with our promise to protect Londoners and our city.
Now is the time once again for London to stand together to face those who seek to divide us.
Thank you. I can take a couple of questions from (Inaudible).
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Was this immediately considered a terrorist attack?
BASU: Given the methodology and given what was -- what was he's carrying and what happened the tragic incidents across the country, and this had all the hallmarks of terrorist incident that's why the counter-terrorism command would call that to investigate.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can you also give us a little more details on how is the suspect was detained by the public, what actually happened there.
BASU: I think there's been an awful lot of images put out by the media as to when he was detained. And it seems to me at the time that he was very quickly and timely giving over to the police and put him custody, I think, as I've said I think their work was commendable by members of the community who must have been incredibly shaken and incredibly scared and incredibly angry.
And I like to thank them and what it proves to me as the Londoners will act together to protect themselves that they will do so in a way that doesn't feed into terrorist and extremist hands.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can you give us any more details about how serious the injuries are to those in hospital.
BASU: No, it's too early to say. And obviously the hospitals themselves are (Inaudible) they will be updating later on the condition of the casualties. I do know at least two are very serious. So, again, our thoughts goes out to the family and their friends who must be very ashamed at this time.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are police able to talk to the perpetrator, have been they able to interrogate him. If so, what are you hearing from?
BASU: No, if that will not have happened yet, that will obviously be a priority of investigation. As soon as he's in our custody and I'll speak for our full custody procedures he will (Inaudible) and obviously as part of the investigation
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We heard from couple of eyewitnesses to say that they saw other people in the van running away after the attack took place. You said there's one perpetrator so far and (Inaudible) others how do you respond to that in the report (Inaudible).
BASU: Let me very clear on this, that was obviously a very keen line of enquiry for us right at the start of this investigation. From what we are seeing and from what witnesses are reporting to us, so there was nobody else in the van. It appears that at this time that this attacker -- have attacked alone.
That is not to say that were are not investigating the full circumstance of how he came to be where he was. But at this point in time there was nobody else in the van
Thank you very much, ladies and gentlemen. Thank you.
FOSTER: Well, that's the latest update then from the police. And actually, they didn't deliver what a lot of people here in Kinsbury Park wanted to deliver. And that was a clear announcement that this was a terror attack. What they're saying is they're keeping an open mind. But they are treating it as a terrorist attack.
I think that isn't necessarily going to help the atmosphere here in Kinsbury Park where there's a lot of concern that it isn't being treated at the level that other terror attacks have been treated at here. But they are clearly speaking to the suspect here in, they charged with murder, as I understood it, not any terror related incidents and that's the situation that they're facing right now. They don't want to call it.
LEE: Well, they said that, Max, that they're treating this as a terrorist attack. That he's being charged with attempted murder. The one thing they were unsure about is the death. Initially, we heard from witnesses saying that it was an elderly man who fell unconscious on the ground. That's when the van struck. So they're trying to determine if the van killed him or if he died priot to that.
That's one part of their investigation
I asked him, if they're able to speak and start interrogating the suspect behind this. They said they haven't been able to do that yet, but it is one of their top priorities. Another question about something we've been hearing about all morning is, other perpetrators.
Anyone else in the van that could have helped carry out this attack. They said that they haven't heard of anyone else, they haven't spoken to any witnesses who described other people inside that van, but they said it's something they're definitely looking into.
[03:29:59] It's something of a major concern of theirs. But the one thing they also emphasize is that they're going to be deploying extra resources around London in the meantime, especially during the holy month of Ramadan to secure mosque, secure sites to help prevent something like this from happening again, Max.
FOSTER: In terms of the comment he made as well he's urging the people to stay calm, but people marking Ramadan in London will see it as a resources pointed that way. What did you understand from that? He's trying to quell fears somehow. But what do you expect and how did you see the strategy there.
LEE: Because when we were talking to people, witnesses out there that is the one thing that they expressed was fear. The fear that they weren't safe. One man said that he is now going to out with someone else and to always be alert. Now the police here are saying, go out and be alert. If you see something report something.
This is similar advice that we've heard after attacks in the past here to stay vigilant. But also, to go on with your lives remain calm. This is af horrible incident. But do not let it define what is happening right now to continue to go on and live your life, but, again, the vigilant. That's important. That is one thing that he's stressed. The people need to keep an eye out about what's going on.
The other thing he did was he praised the response time by the police. They said that they received the phone call just shortly after midnight. He said that the police were in the area, that they were able to respond quickly. They were able to take the suspect who has already apprehended by locals in the area and they were able to take him away.
He was then sent to a hospital for a check before being handed over to the police. So this is a city, though, that has had a large security presence, especially after the recent attacks and so he praise that quick response time by the police to this latest incident, Max?
FOSTER: So where do we go from here? We're waiting for the suspect to be interviewed and that's when we're going to get the idea of motive. But presumably he's in hospital. He answered -- he initially went to hospital which is why they can't speak to him.
LEE: That's right. And Max, that is crucial now. You don't -- you know, in the recent past attacks you didn't get someone that you could an attacker or someone, a suspect, rather, who they could detain and question later. Now they have someone they will be able to ask him the question. Again the police say they haven't been able to start that process.
They hope to start it soon as possible. And then they'll start to get an idea of the motive. What is the motive behind this attack behind this. They say also what is the state of his health, was this someone who had mental issues.
Questions that they're going to need to answer. But right now they said they're treating it as a terrorist attack. They have a -- the terrorism task force that is investigating it. We've heard that from several politicians that they believe it's a suspected terrorist attack, and as well as from London's Mayor Sadiq Khan saying that this was a terrorist attack, Max.
FOSTER: OK. Ian, thank you. You're just seeing some mood just there, but actually unfolded behind me and as he was speaking some sort of detainment going on. We don't know whether it's link or not but it just really expresses the tension here right now.
Let's speak to Steve Moore, he is CNN's law enforcement contributor. As you watch this from across upon, Steve, what do you think about the challenge facing the British authorities with this categorization around terror.
STEVE MOORE, LAW ENFORCEMENT CONTRIBUTOR, CNN: Well, I think the categorization is going to be pretty straightforward. This was an incident of domestic terrorism that was the result of one person's desire for vindication.
FOSTER: When they consider what is terror and what's not terror, what does define it because everyone here feels very -- clearly here a van was deliberately driven into a crowd. They knew he was going to be in that crowd. So therefore it is a terror attack. But do we then need to know that it was targeting Muslims to make it a terror attack, how does that work?
MOORE: You would need to know that the person was targeting Muslims particularly, because at least in the United States they have to look at your lost. But I bet they're very similar. You have to -- you have to attack a specific people, group, religion, gender and do this for the political reasons or to coerce that people group into doing one of -- one of many different things. Or you can just be doing it to coward them.
[03:35:01] And this definitely if the facts keep going in this direction, this was definitely, without a doubt, an act of terrorism. It just wasn't international terrorism.
FOSTER: But then we look at the incident in Times Square, where everyone thought it was terrorism for many hours. And it turned out not to be so we need to be careful as well, right?
MOORE: Absolutely we do. I think the one thing that convinces me that it's probably still going to go down this road that we don't know is the fact that police have not backed off the terrorism investigation. And they are -- they -- for anecdotal information that he was screaming that you deserve this, you deserve this. What he says you, it means he's targeted -- he expects these people even if they weren't the right people. He expects them to be of a certain group.
FOSTER: And in terms of whether this goes next it's all that question in the suspect, right, hoping that he delivers the information they want. And then they can figure out whether or not those are wider network and that sort of process that we go into, if it is a terror attack.
MOORE: Absolutely, Max. But there are times when the person doesn't come forth with their true motivation because they've somewhat realized the trouble they've gotten themselves into it. Suddenly it becomes much more real. But that's not going to protect then if they have a particular social media presence. If they've talked to many people about this, it's not going to depend on this person's confession, whether they can convict him or not.
FOSTER: OK. Steve, thank you very much, indeed for that. We know that one of the delays, potentially, is this -- the fact that he's being assessed for mental health issues as well. So there's lot of things to consider before we can even get to that questioning phase.
But the issue is that here people want answers and they want them now. And there is a lot of tension building up around that. So pressure really is on the police right now. And as the officer was describing, there are very extra resources when you consider what happened with the London block fire, with the London Bridge attacked.
It's really tough for the emergency services right now. But actually the pressure is here and they want those answers. So let's see how they handle that over the course of the day. We'll be back in a moment.
[03:40:05] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
FOSTER: Welcome back to Finsbury Park, we're in north London. nd this is the police line. It' because authorities say a vehicle plowed into pedestrians. One person has died -- and eight, at least eight other people injured and taken away to the hospital.
It took place here in Finsbury Park. It was near the mosque. Authorities say all the victims were members of the Muslim community. And the case is being investigated as a terror attack.
CNN has exclusive video from a witness to the incident is said to show the allege driver and the van which was used to ram into the crowd. The suspect was tackled by witnesses and held until police arrived. He's now in custody. And police say so far there's only one suspect in this case.
The Muslim councilor of Great Britain tweeted, "It was the van ran over people as they were leaving the mosque." The British prime minister says she'll chair and emergency meeting in the coming hours. And the London Mayor, Sadiq Khan went further saying police are responding to a horrific terrorist attack on innocent people.
U.K. government officials are reacting to the news with online statements. Now the labour leader as well, has just tweeted, important here not just because he's the leader of the opposition, but also he's because he is the local M.P. He said "I'm totally shocked of the incident at Finsbury Park tonight."
Phil Black is here. We have this horrendous round of incident here in the U.K. Obviously, the block fire went it was a terrorist attack. But they've all got this same pressure on them. People are expecting answers sooner and sooner after these things happen. And that's a huge pressure on these guys the police.
PHIL BLACK, CORRESPONDENT, CNN: Indeed it is. And the police have given us regular updates through the day and the latest update in the case but they are treating this as terrorist attack largely because it bares all the hallmarks of some of those other previous attacks in London. The Westminster attack, the London Bridge attack, they both primarily use vehicles to knock people down.
Of course, the London Bridge attack and well, actually both of those use knives as well. The police stressing on this occasion, no one suffered any knife injuries, but they said bears all the hallmarks. They are how keeping an open mind when it comes to motivation that there hasn't been this attack.
FOSTER: In terms of where it goes from here, the crucial thing is they haven't spoken to the suspect, right, because he went to the hospital and they're assessing him.
BLACK: Yes, that's right. So they obviously want to do that and that will give him the clearest indication hopefully if he chooses to speak to them, if he cooperates. That will give him an idea of just why he did this, because that's the one unanswered question. We know what happened here.
BLACK: And by all accounts, all the witness accounts suggested this was entirely deliberate from the way that he swerved into the people. From the way that he resisted the people he tried to stop him.
BLACK: From the things he said to them as he was fighting back. "You deserve this, you guys deserve this." That's what the witnesses said.
FOSTER: And that's why consistent testimony, haven't we from the many people we've spoken to so it's a very clear picture right now.
BLACK: It is indeed. So the one unanswered question is why did he do this, what was his motivation, is it political, religious ideological, that sort of thing.
FOSTER: What's going to be the challenge that Theresa May when she comes out, is it the police haven't had a chance to question him. Or as you say he doesn't admit any sort of motivation as we speak, she's going to have to come out and appease the pressure here, which is all around, you know, why aren't they calling it terror. Why are they not representing this community as they have other communities that have been attacked?
BLACK: Among the local community here there is a concern that this isn't being treated equally in the way those attacks in London have been, where they were according to people here branded terrorist attacks relatively quickly.
I think we can do what the police are doing here and they're saying they treat -- they are treating this as terrorism.
BLACK: And they came to make the point, too. The prime minister has come to make that point, the home secretary is making that point. They're all saying this is being treated as terrorism while they investigate the possible motivation. It is only the mayor of London that he's going ahead of all of them in saying this is a horrific terrorist attack.
No doubt he has been briefed by police, but he is ahead of his own police force in the way that he is describing it.
FOSTER: And the (Inaudible) for Theresa May is to sort of word in the way but she recognizes it, but presume she can do that by saying it is being treated as a terrorist attack is getting the same resources as the other attacks that we have.
BLACK: Indeed, and I think that's the point that those officials are making.
BLACK: They're treating this seriously. They got here quickly, we heard the police briefing stressing out quickly the response time was they are giving all the resources as if this was any terror attack and making the point this isn't just an attack on this community. Once again, it is yet again an attack on London.
FOSTER: We heard there from the commander there he's having all of this up, talking about the witnesses that saw what happened and then got involved and pulled the guy out of the van. Incredible community work going on here.
[03:45:03] We spoke to one other and he said he acted instinctively but what a brave...
BLACK: It's an extraordinary story, isn't it. These people saw the van, saw it plow through these people and then actually ran up to the van once it stopped and wrestled this guy to the ground.
FOSTER: They thought he was going to carry on.
BLACK: They feared that he was going to continue to hurt people, indeed.
BLACK: And we know possibly he could have but they stopped him. More than that they stopped him and held him on the ground and of course while they were waiting for the police to get there, you could understand the local crowd, well, they were pretty emotional, they were pretty upset. They were doing their best to keep them away from this guy because who knows what could have happened.
FOSTER: And (Inaudible) apparently.
BLACK: Indeed. It's such a highly motive charged situation.
BLACK: These guys and other members of the community kept the people away. And some of the video we've seen also shows the police officers putting themselves between the man who was being held and a clearly angry upset crowd trying to get to him.
FOSTER: You've been first on the scene for CNN and all of these stories recently in the U.K. When they talk about the resources being stretched, I mean, they're not buying, are they, I mean, it's an incredible pressure on the emergency services and particularly the police right now.
BLACK: What we've been hearing obviously there's the Westminster attack back in March, was that there has been this enormous uptick in terrorist activity and terror but that's on the investigative side, too. They are making arrest on this sort of stuff almost every day.
Now what they're usually talking about there is internationally inspired Islamist terrorism.
FOSTER: This doesn't look like that, isn't it?
BLACK: This doesn't look like that, no. This could all very well be terrorism by all accounts but certainly been giving...
FOSTER: There could be in response to it.
BLACK: It could be in response to it. So it's a more specific domestic type of terrorism. But what it does do is it adds to the sense of unease within the city in a very significant way. Because in the wake of the Islamist attack what people have been talking about is, don't worry, we are united. We are tolerant, we are Londoners still.
Now we have possibly a reprisal attack against the Muslim community.
BLACK: That is going to make a lot of people very upset and nervous and that's what people here have been telling us.
FOSTER: The great shame on that is that, you know, one of the positives that came out of the tower block fire was that how all the communities around it together and there's the real cohesiveness between the Muslim communities and all the other communities in that tower block and that work has almost been done by this, but again, build the separation.
BLACK: Indeed. And even in the wake of the other terror attacks, too. A lot of people went out of their way to show their support for the Muslim communities. That said, a lot of Muslim say they've also been on the receiving end with a lot of hate and Islamophobia recently, too. They say that has been increasing and that's where they're worried that this sort of attack fits into that trend.
BLACK: And they are concerned there could be more of this.
FOSTER: OK. Phil, thank you very much, indeed. They're not looking for any other suspects. So we think we've reached the end of the immediate response. But certainly it's all about the investigation, and crucially the questioning of that suspect. We'll bring you any updates as they come to us.
[03:50:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)
FOSTER: Well, another week, another tragedy in the U.K. This time a vehicle plowing into pedestrians here in north London. One person has died at least eight others are wounded, though, investigators say it's not quite likely whether the person who died, died as a direct result of the attack.
We're trying to get some clarification on that. This event took place in the Finsbury Park area it's near a mosque. Authorities say all the victims were members of the Muslim community and the case is being investigated as a terror attack.
Now CNN has exclusive new video from a witness to that incident. It's said to show the alleged driver and the van which was used to ram into the crowd. The suspect was tackled by witnesses and held until police arrived. He's now in custody and police say so far there's been only one suspect in this case. They haven't actually managed to question him crucially.
The Muslim councilor of Great Britain tweeted, "It was informed the van ran over people as they were leaving the mosques." British prime minister says she was will be chairing an emergency meeting in the coming hours and we'll expect an update from her after that.
And London Mayor Sadiq Khan went further saying police are responding to a horrific terrorist attack on innocent people. So many stories coming in, they're all pretty consistent so we're -- you know, rely on what we've been told in this series of witnesses we've been speaking to. Here is just one of them.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I came out, I was in the vicinity I broke my fast in the mosque. I went to the shop and came back. And after I see a pandemonium, I see a white van. I see people screaming, shouting, extremely, extremely devastated, you understand, it was just an anarchy, you know. And I see the man he was doing stuff like this and he was just make like being very...
FOSTER: This is the suspect you're talking about?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, the suspect.
FOSTER: Just describe how that area is. I mean, it's this busy every night...
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's right.
FOSTER: ... during Ramadan.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, that's right.
FOSTER: So really thick with people, and everyone was identifiably Muslim we just say.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That's right. That's right. And that's why I say this was a -- this was a direct attack on Muslims, why. Because this time of year, there's two mosques. People are going to be the last days of Ramadan, people are going to be praying, night prayers in the mosque.
So for him, for this assailant, you understand, this terrorist for him to come and do an attack where there's highly populated Muslim area to cause anything except for this was a deliberate attack on the Muslim community.
FOSTER: And if nothing else, it feels under attack today, the community looking into, right.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: To be honest, it doesn't feel under attack today, it's still under attack for a very long time. To be specific since 9/11, you understand, that's when -- that's when the Muslim community has been feeling under attack. You understand, Islamophobia, every single day is on the rise from far right extremist.
And today we've seen a perfect example of that happening here, you understand, the community is absolutely terrified and devastated, you understand, deeply saddened. People just recently passed away in Grenfell tower and the people from this community will go over and there and helping them and for this to happen on their doorstep, you understand, people don't feel safe.
[03:55:07] FOSTER: It's interesting because outside Grenfell tower there was a similar sort of anger bubbling up where they felt they weren't represented by the authorities on the dark there.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: One hundred and ten percent, why, because even if you look at the national media outlet. When this incident happen, immediately they didn't mark it down as a terrorist incident.
FOSTER: It's difficult, it's not our job to do that. The police have to do that.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Of course. OK. Fair enough. But even for the police services, as well. Do you understand?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The police services to not mark it down as terrorist incident or at least as suspected terror incident. That's also what you could -- that's they're not sure on the Muslim...
FOSTER: If you do that now and they say, you know, you got enough information to go and do that this morning. Is it going to be too late for you in a way? Do you feel that the damage has already been done?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: But that, listen, I'm telling you like just as I see this as lack of reprisal, lack of retaliation attack towards the Muslim community.
FOSTER: What if there's a lot that though.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: What was has happened in the previous past, do you understand. Unfortunately, there is a possibility that now that those people that were on the fringe they didn't want to do anything. They didn't see any -- (Inaudible). Maybe they'll see a justification after this.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
FOSTER: So we have it confirmed this hour that this incident here in Finsbury Park will be treated as a terrorist incident. More details on the investigation and the reaction after the short break.
[04:00:00] (COMMERCIAL BREAK)