Three teenagers injured in stabbing attack on Hague shopping street

At least three teenagers were wounded on Friday after a knife-wielding man went on a stabbing spree in the main shopping street of The Hague. 

Dutch police are hunting for the perpetrator after the attack near the Hudson Bay department store, which was packed with shoppers for a Black Friday sale, a police source told the Telegraph.  

The three victims were released from hospital late on Friday night, and were being questioned by police.

"All three victims of the stabbing incident in Grote Marktstraat are minors. We are in contact with their families," The Hague police said on Twitter. The police did not give their ages.

A police spokesman said there is "no direct evidence to suspect terrorist attack" but added "we are keeping an open mind and looking at all possibilities".

Marije Kuiper, police spokeswoman, said no arrest has yet been made, but an urgent search is taking place.

"An extensive manhunt is still underway for a man who stabbed three people and escaped by running into Hudson Bay department store," the police said.

They said that the store has an exit into a pedestrian street, which was crowded with Black Friday shoppers, and the attacker managed to escape.

The knife used in the attack was found on Friday night, thrown into a plant container.

Police were quickly on the scene after first two victims, both young women, were stabbed. But the search was hindered by hundreds of panic-stricken shoppers running through the Grote Markt Straat – the city’s main shopping street.

Maarijke den Bos said she had just come out of the department store when she heard screaming in the street.

"There was a virtual stamped with people running in every direction, ambulances arriving, and so many police," she said. 

Hundreds of people were escorted out of the shopping centre and Grotke Markt Street, a busy thoroughfare, in the wake of the incident. 

Photos posted on social media showed emergency services  and a helicopter at the scene.

The motive of the attack remains unclear. 

"We are keeping every scenario open," said Ms Kuiper.

Police sealed off a wide perimeter behind which onlookers were kept at bay.

The stabbing was also not far from parliament in The Hague, which is the seat of government for the Netherlands and home to many international organisations.

The US embassy warned its nationals in The Hague to avoid the area because of "reports of a security incident" and told them to let loved ones know they were safe.

In Britain, two members of the public were killed in a stabbing on London Bridge in the heart of the capital. The suspected attacker was then tackled by passers-by and shot dead by police.

The Netherlands has seen a series of terror attacks and plots, although not so far on the scale of those in other European countries.

In March four people were killed when a Turkish-born man opened fire on a tram in the city of Utrecht.

Dutch police on Monday arrested two suspected jihadists, one of them in The Hague, and charged them with planning a terror attack using suicide and car bombs.

Earlier this month a Pakistani man was sentenced to 10 years in jail for a plot to kill far-right Dutch politician Geert Wilders.

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