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Up to 13 people are feared dead and dozens have been injured after a van crashed into a crowd of people in central Barcelona, with reports of at least one armed man holed up in a nearby restaurant.
Catalonia’s TV3 reported that 13 people had died and dozens were injured, but these numbers have not been confirmed by Spanish authorities. Catalan police have so far confirmed one death and said 32 people have been injured, 10 of them seriously.
Live Barcelona attack: multiple deaths reported after van hits Las Ramblas crowds – latest updates
Police confirm fatalities and say they are treating incident in Spanish city as terror attack, amid local reports that armed men have entered restaurant
Spanish police, who are treating the incident as a terrorist attack, said the “massive crash” happened on Las Ramblas in an area of the city popular with tourists.
Television pictures showed a crashed van stopped on top of a Joan Míro mosaic halfway down Las Ramblas. It reportedly entered the wide boulevard where it meets the Plaça de Catalunya, then drove towards the port area, meaning it would have covered more than 500 metres.
In a tweet, Catalan police confirmed they were dealing with a terrorist attack: “The terrorist attack protocol has been activated.”
Spanish media reported that the Guardia Civil have identified the suspect thought to have hired the white Fiat van used in the attack. According to those reports, he is understood to be from north Africa but to possess a NIE, the identity document issued to foreigners who are resident in Spain.
There were separate reports that a suspect had been arrested, but it was not clear whether this referred to the same person.
A second van linked to the attack – assumed to have been used as getaway car – has been found in the small town of Vic in Catalonia