The Dutch police mentioned on Tuesday that they have been nonetheless contemplating terrorism as a motive for a lethal taking pictures on a tram within the metropolis of Utrecht based mostly partly on a notice they found.
The taking pictures on Monday, which left no less than three individuals useless and 5 injured, and an ensuing manhunt prompted heightened safety and despatched ripples of concern by the Netherlands. A 37-year-old immigrant from Turkey was arrested Monday night time.
Individuals who know the suspect, Gokmen Tanis, and members of the family in Turkey quoted by information organizations there, had mentioned on Monday that they believed the assault was some sort of home dispute.
However the police mentioned that they had thus far discovered no hyperlinks between Mr. Tanis and the three individuals killed on the tram.
“To this point, a terrorist motive is being strongly thought-about,” the nationwide police mentioned on Tuesday.
“The rationale for this, amongst different issues, is a notice discovered within the getaway automotive,” they mentioned, however didn’t elaborate. “Different motives aren’t being dominated out, these are being investigated as properly.”
The taking pictures jarred a rustic the place gun violence is uncommon, and which has not seen the sorts of main terrorist assaults which have rocked Belgium, Britain, France and Germany lately. It got here simply days after a gunman, considered a white nationalist, killed 50 individuals at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, prompting fears of both copycat assaults in opposition to Muslims or retaliatory assaults by them.
The police mentioned on Tuesday that that they had discovered a firearm when Mr. Tanis was arrested. They didn’t say what sort of gun it was, or whether or not it was the weapon used within the assault.
Mr. Tanis had been arrested a number of instances earlier than and was dealing with a rape cost. Individuals who knew him from the Kanaleneiland neighborhood of Utrecht, residence to many immigrants from Turkey and Morocco, described him as erratic, troubled and aggressive.
The Utrecht taking pictures happened round 10:30 a.m. close to 24 October Sq., and the gunman or gunmen — there have been conflicting accounts concerning the variety of assailants — fled. The police mentioned the theft of a automotive at gunpoint close by was tied to the assault, however the particulars have been unclear.
Three individuals — a 19-year-old lady and two males, ages 28 and 49 — have been killed within the assault, and 5 others have been injured, three of them critically. Officers haven’t publicly recognized any of the victims.
Not sure of the motive, how many individuals have been concerned, or the place the killer was, the authorities rapidly ramped up safety and raised the terrorist menace evaluation in Utrecht Province to the best stage. For a number of hours, the tram service was shut down round Utrecht, individuals have been informed to stay indoors, colleges have been locked down and officers in physique armor have been deployed to police stations, airports and different key places.
Along with Mr. Tanis, two males of their 20s have been arrested on Monday in reference to the taking pictures, however the police acknowledged that it was not clear what position, if any, they could have performed in it. They mentioned on Tuesday that the boys, whom they didn’t determine, have been nonetheless in custody and have been being questioned.