Police in New Zealand shot and killed a “violent extremist” after he stabbed and wounded at least six people in an Auckland supermarket.
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the incident was a “terrorist attack” carried out by a Sri Lankan national who was under police surveillance.
The man, who has not been officially named, was a supporter of the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group, she said.
Police killed the man within 60 seconds of the attack on Friday.
“What happened today was despicable, it was hateful it was wrong,” Ms Ardern said in a news conference. “It was carried out by an individual, not a faith.”
Of the six wounded people, three are in a critical condition and one is in a serious condition, health officials say.
“The hospital staff are doing everything they can to preserve their lives,” Auckland Mayor Phil Goff told the BBC.
“We’re all horrified by what’s happened. But… justice came pretty swiftly for the offender,” he added.
How did the attack unfold?
It happened at the Countdown supermarket at LynnMall in the Auckland district of New Lynn on Friday afternoon.
Police commissioner Andrew Coster said a surveillance team and a specialist tactics group had followed the man from his home to the supermarket. But while there were concerns about him, officials said they had no reason to think he was planning an attack on Friday, and the team believed he was going to do his grocery shopping.
After entering the store, however, the attacker got hold of a knife and went on a stabbing spree.
Shopper Michelle Miller told local news outlet Stuff that the man was “running around like a lunatic” and attacking people.
“All I heard was a lot of screaming,” she said.
“[People were] running out, hysterically, just screaming, yelling, scared,” another witness said, adding that he saw an elderly man lying on the ground with a stab wound.
Witnesses also said the attacker had shouted “Allahu akbar” (God is greatest).
Mr Coster said police rushed over upon hearing the commotion and shot and killed the attacker when he charged at the officers with the knife.
Footage from the supermarket shared online showed people fleeing before the sound of gun shots could be heard.