Tuesday 17 September 2019

Melania Trump responds to New York attack: 'My heart breaks for NYC today'

Tom Batchelor

US First Lady Melania Trump has tweeted that her “heart breaks” for New York after a number of people were reported to have died in what police are treating as a terror attack.

Taking to Twitter before her husband, Donald Trump, had publicly commented on the incident, Ms Trump said: "My heart breaks for #NYC today. Thoughts & prayers as we monitor the situation."

New York City's mayor, Bill de Blasio, confirmed on Tuesday evening that a truck attack in lower Manhattan killed eight people, describing it as a "cowardly" act of terror.

In Washington, the White House said the President had been briefed on the attack.

White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Mr Trump - a New York native - was briefed by White House chief of staff John Kelly and "will be continually updated as more details are known".

Mr Trump tweeted around 20 minutes after his wife: "In NYC, looks like another attack by a very sick and deranged person. Law enforcement is following this closely. NOT IN THE U.S.A.!"

In a news conference later officials said a 29-year-old man drove a rented van on to a busy New York cycle path before being shot by police after jumping out with what turned out to be two fake guns.

He was taken into custody, and his condition was not immediately disclosed.

At least nine people were injured in the incident near the World Trade Centre.

Police said the vehicle entered the cycle path on West Street a few streets from the World Trade Centre memorial and struck at least 15 people, leaving mangled bicycles behind. At least two bodies could be seen lying on the path.

Independent News Service

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