American Tourists Victims of Stabbing Attack in Amsterdam Train Station
On Friday, two American tourists were victims of a stabbing attack in Amsterdam's central railway station. US ambassador to the Netherlands Pete Hoekstra confirmed on Saturday that the victims were US citizens visiting the country.
Dutch authorities are investing the incident they say had a "terrorist motive." The main suspect is a 19-year-old Afghan national, whom Dutch authorities will only name as Jawed S. due to privacy laws.
Police shot and wounded the suspect after he allegedly stabbed the two Americans. Both the victims and suspect are recovering from their wounds in the hospital. The Americans, whose identities have not been released, have “serious but non-life threatening injuries," according to Amsterdam Police spokesman Ruben Sprong.
The suspect will face an investigating judge behind closed doors on Monday, said Sprong.
“We wish [the Americans] a speedy recovery and are working closely with the city of Amsterdam to provide assistance to them and their families,” Hoekstra said in a statement.
Dutch authorities have asked Germany to conduct a search of the suspect's apartment in the country, where he has a residency permit.
“The victims were not chosen deliberately or with a clear reason,” Amsterdam authorities said, according to the Associated Press. “The investigation is still underway, and all scenarios remain open for the investigation team.”
The attack occurred around 12pm local time at Amsterdam's central station, a major transportation hub that's used by more than 250,000 passengers daily. Trains, subways, trams and ferries connect through the station, which features a link to Schiphol International Airport (AMS). The station was not evacuated but two train platforms were closed while the police investigated.
“Something happened; we don’t know yet what, but during that, two people were stabbed and one person with a knife in his hand walked away, and he was shot by police,” said Amsterdam police spokesman Rob van der Veen.
The US Consulate General in Amsterdam put out a security alert on Friday, recommending Americans in the Netherlands take the following five actions:
- Avoid active investigation sites in the area of Centraal Station.
- Notify friends and family of your safety as appropriate.
- Follow instructions and view updates from Dutch police and government authorities. https://www.politie.nl/
- Review your personal security plans.
- Monitor local media for updates.
The US State Department still places the Netherlands on a level one travel advisory, which is the lowest warning a country can have.
H/T: New York Times