Barcelona 'terror attack' leaves 13 dead, over 50 injured

2017-08-17 20:30
Armed policemen arrive in a cordoned off area after a van ploughed into the crowd, killing one person and injuring several others on the Rambla in Barcelona on August 17, 2017. (AFP)

Armed policemen arrive in a cordoned off area after a van ploughed into the crowd, killing one person and injuring several others on the Rambla in Barcelona on August 17, 2017. (AFP)

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Barcelona - At least 13 people were killed and over 50 injured Thursday when a driver ploughed a van into pedestrians on a busy street in Barcelona popular with tourists, the region's interior minister said.

Catalan police tweeted that "there are mortal victims and injured from the crash" without specifying numbers.

A Barcelona-based newspaper is reporting at least one is dead and 20 are injured after a van jumped a sidewalk in Las Ramblas, slamming into pedestrians.

At least five were seen lying on the ground on the popular tourist street. El Pais newspaper, citing unnamed police sources, says the two perpetrators are holed up in a bar in central Barcelona.

The newspaper says that Barcelona police are treating the van crash as a terror attack. Some local media have reported bursts of gunfire.

Barcelona police, in a tweet, told people to stay away from the centre of the city because of a "large contingent of security forces and emergency services" deployed in the area.

In a photograph shown by public broadcaster RTVE, three people were lying on the ground in the street of the northern Spanish city on Thursday afternoon, apparently being helped by police and others.

Videos of the scene recorded people screaming as they fled. Police cordoned off the broad, popular street, ordering stores and nearby Metro and train stations to close.

A helicopter hovered over the scene.

Read more on:    barcelona  |  terrorist attack
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