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Port Authority

New York City explosion was 'attempted terrorist attack'

A person was arrested at the scene following the incident.

Update 3.25pm

AN EXPLOSION AT the Port Authority bus terminal in New York City has been described as an “attempted terrorist attack” by the city’s mayor.

Speaking at a press conference this afternoon, City mayor Bill de Blasio said that it was lucky that the suspect didn’t achieve his ultimate goals.

“Let’s be clear, this was an attempted terrorist attack. Thank god the perpetrator did not achieve his ultimate goal,” de Blasio said.

A 27-year-old man had a crude pipe bomb strapped to him and it went off in a passageway from Seventh and Eighth Avenues near Times Square.

Three people suffered minor non-life-threatening injuries. The suspect was also injured and was taken into custody.

The incident happened around 7.30am local time.

Law enforcement officials say he was inspired by the Islamic State, but had apparently not had any direct contact with the terror group.

“The choice of New York is always for a reason. We’re a beacon to the world and we can show that a society with many faiths and many backgrounds can work and we show that democracy works. Our enemies want to undermine that, terrorists want to undermine that,” de Blasio said.

“They yearn to attack New York City but New York is blessed with the finest law enforcement and what our first responders did today is an example of our ability to address a situation quickly, contain it and make sure people are safe.”

Response to the attack

Shortly after the alarm was raised, the city’s official emergency notification system said that emergency personnel were at the scene near west 42nd street between 8th and 9th avenue, and told people to consider alternate routes.

The city’s fire department also confirmed earlier that it was attending the scene, and the New York Police Department said it was “responding to reports of an explosion”.

Nearby subway lines A, C and E were evacuated following the incident, and subways are bypassing Port Authority and Times Square stations. Officials said that they hoped to have normal service resuming by this evening.

The Port Authority is near Times Square in midtown Manhattan.

De Blasio said that no other know incidents or activities are active at this time.

Speaking at the press conference, Governor of New York Andrew Cuomo said: “The first news this morning was obviously very frightening and disturbing. When you hear about a bomb in the subway station, which is in many ways our worst nightmare, but the reality turned out better than the initial expectations and fear.

This is New York, the reality is we are a target to many who would like to make a statement against democracy, against freedom.
The counter reality is this is New York and we all pitched together, we’re savvy people and we keep our eyes open.

The White House has said that President Trump has been briefed on the situation.

With reporting from Hayley Halpin and Associated Press. 

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