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Vehicle hits pedestrians in popular Barcelona tourist area

A vehicle has struck dozens of people on the Ramblas, one of Barcelona's most popular tourist streets

A vehicle struck a crowd of people on one of Barcelona’s most popular tourist streets, killing and injuring dozens of people on Thursday, August 17.

Catalan police said a van had plowed into the crowd on the Ramblas.

According to La Vanguardia newspaper, a white van ran over a group of people on the Rambla de Canaletes at the junction with Plaça Catalunya, and drove along the promenade before crashing. Catalan President Carles Puigdemont said two people have been arrested in connection with the attack, and a third may be at large.

According to Interior Minister Joaquim Forn, 13 people have died. The number of people injured in hospital is reported to be at least 80 and may be more than 90. Many of them are seriously wounded.

According to El Periodico newspaper, at least one occupant of the vehicle fled the scene on foot towards the La Boqueria market.

One of the people arrested has been identified by the police union as 28-year old Driss Oukabir, a legal resident of Spain and citizen of Morocco.

Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack via its Amaq news agency. The terror group said: “The perpetrators of the attack in Barcelona are Islamic State soldiers and carried out the operation in response to appeals targeting Coalition countries.”

Two police officers in Barcelona were also reported injured when they were struck by a white van. It is not yet known if the incident was related to the attack.

[Developing story.]

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