BARCELONA, Spain — A machete-wielding man killed a sexton and injured a priest in assaults at two church buildings within the metropolis of Algeciras on Wednesday earlier than being arrested, Spain’s inside ministry stated, in what authorities are investigating as a potential act of terrorism.
The suspect was arrested within the southern metropolis and is within the custody of Spain’s Nationwide Police. The ministry didn’t determine him.
The assault began round 7 p.m. when the armed man went into the San Isidro church and assaulted a priest, who was critically injured, the ministry stated.
The assailant then went to a second church, the Nuestra Señora de La Palma — a five-minute stroll away — the place he entered and continued his rampage, assaulting the sexton. The sexton, whose job it’s to maintain the church and its upkeep, fled outdoors the place the attacker dealt him the mortal wounds in a public sq., the ministry stated.
The Algeciras city corridor stated the sexton was named Diego Valencia and recognized the wounded priest as Antonio Rodríguez. The city corridor stated he was hospitalized and in steady situation.
Native media reported that no less than three different folks had been injured.
Spain’s Nationwide Court docket stated a decide has opened an investigation right into a potential act of terrorism.
Police are investigating the incident, the inside ministry stated, to find out the “nature of the assault.” It supplied no additional element on the attacker’s potential motive.
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez joined the outpouring of condolences.
“I need to categorical my sincerest condolences for the households of the sexton slain within the horrible assault in Algeciras,” Sánchez wrote on Twitter. “I want the injured a swift restoration.”
The secretary normal of Spain’s Episcopal Convention, Francisco García, wrote on Twitter that “I’ve obtained the information of the incident in Algeciras with nice ache.”
“These are unhappy moments of struggling, we’re united by the ache of households of the victims and for the Diocese of Cádiz,” he added.
Algeciras is close to the southern tip of Spain, resting throughout from a bay from Gibraltar. It’s house to an vital port with ferry connections to northern Africa.
The city corridor declared a day of mourning when flags will fly at half-staff.
“We’re all surprised by these acts, which have crammed us with ache,” Mayor José Landaluce stated. “Algeciras has all the time been a metropolis the place harmony and tolerance reign, regardless of incidents like this that create a picture that doesn’t correspond to actuality.”
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