LIVERPOOL: British police arrested three men under the country’s Terrorism Act after a car explosion outside a hospital in northwest England left one person dead and another injured.
According to the details, the Greater Manchester Police said the men, ages 29, 26 and 21, were arrested in Kensington, an area of Liverpool with a high poverty rate. Authorities did not provide any further information about the evidence against them or details about the possible cause of the explosion.
A taxi carrying one passenger pulled up just before 11:00 GMT, as a national two minutes’ silence for Remembrance Sunday was due to begin, and exploded.
The passenger was declared dead at the scene and is yet to be formally identified.
The male driver was injured and is in hospital in a stable condition.
Detectives from Counter Terrorism Police North West said three men — aged 29, 26 and 21 — were detained in the Kensington area of the city.
They said they were continuing to keep an open mind about the cause of the blast and were working with Merseyside Police as the investigation continued “at pace”. The security service, MI5, is also assisting.
Armed officers have carried out raids on properties on Rutland Avenue near Sefton Park, and Boaler Street in Kensington.
Specialist officers remain outside a house on Rutland Avenue, in operation police say is linked to the explosion.
Police negotiators are on the scene, a fire crew is on standby, and a number of residents have been evacuated.
A large cordon, guarded by uniformed officers, is in place.
Carl Bessant, whose partner had just had a baby, was inside the hospital at the time of the blast.
“My partner is really shaking up to be honest,” he said.
“We were so close and she was feeding the baby when it happened. We heard a loud bang and looked out of the window.
“We saw the car on fire and someone jump out… screaming, and there was someone inside the car.
“The hospital shut down, no-one in or out, so they said, but people were using the back entrance.”
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Twitter: “My thoughts are with all those affected by the awful incident in Liverpool today.
“I want to thank the emergency services for their quick response and professionalism, and the police for their ongoing work on the investigation.”
Home Secretary Priti Patel also tweeted she was “being kept regularly updated on the awful
Chief Constable Serena Kennedy, of Merseyside Police, sought to reassure the public, saying events of this nature were very rare and that there would be an increased and visible police presence on the streets in the coming days.
A bomb disposal unit and fire engines attended the scene earlier, which remains cordoned off. Road closures are also in place.
Police were called at 10:59 GMT to reports of a car explosion.
Phil Garrigan, chief fire officer of Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service, said the car fire had been “fully developed” when crews arrived shortly after 11:00 GMT.
“The operational crews extinguished the fire rapidly but… there was one fatality,” he said.
“Another individual had left the vehicle prior to the fire developing to the extent that it did. Our thoughts are with them and the families of those involved.”
Liverpool Women’s Hospital said visiting access had been restricted until further notice and patients had been diverted to other hospitals where possible.
“We are reviewing our patient activity for the next 24-48 hours and patients should wait to be contacted for updates about any planned appointments or other attendance at the hospital,” chief executive Kathryn Thomson said.
Liverpool Women’s Hospital receives about 50,000 patients annually and is the largest hospital in its specialism in Europe.
Democrats Voice brings the perspective of democrats across the world under one space.