UK: Reading locals react to 'diabolical' stabbing attack

Following Forbury Gardens stabbing in Reading, where three people died and three more were left seriously injured on Saturday, neighbours of suspected knife attacker Khairi Saadallah commented on what one described as a «diabolical» incident on Sunday. «Around 8 o'clock last night, armed police turned up with their guns, police dogs, saw grinders and they were patrolling the area for a good hour and a half, two hours. Then MI5 came about two hours later and they all rushed in to there one big bang. And then they all came out, and they all left the scene,» said a local Sophie Parker. «First we were told he was shot, now we are told he's arrested. Terrorist attack, scary,» she added. Another local, Natalie Hickson, stated how she feared something had happened after hearing a helicopter overflying the area. «I heard on the radio that there were stabbings and I could see a helicopter, so I knew there was something, cause I'm used to that in London. Whenever there's helicopters that means there's something major going on.» Local Kieran Vernon, also expressed his shock about how the incident had unfolded, as he was initially oblivious to the fact that the suspected attacker even hid in the building. «Obviously this stuff in town, that was just crazy, and then the fact that he came here and started hiding. It's just crazy, absolutely crazy and I can't even think of words to describe it, and all the people we put through, the whole building was outside, so everyone, all the kids were outside till 2, 3 AM in the morning. It's absolutely diabolical, diabolical, it shouldn't happen, it really shouldn't happen.» The 25-year-old was arrested at the scene, on suspicion of murder. Preliminary reports suggested that the incident was not terror-related. However, on Sunday morning local police declared that the stabbing attack was being treated as a «terrorist incident». Counter-terrorism police will now be taking over the investigation, announced Thames Valley Police in a statement on Sunday morning.

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