Recently, Austria faced an Islamist terrorist attack, in which 4 people lost their lives. This incident comes after a teacher in France was killed allegedly for showing a cartoon of Prophet Mohammed in class. Let’s understand what happened in Vienna and take a look at other such incidents.
Crux of the Matter
On Monday, 2nd November 2020, several people were fatally wounded in attacks near the synagogue in Seitenstettengasse. Six crime scenes reported in Central Vienna known as The Bermuda Triangle: Seitenstettengasse and nearby Morzinplatz, Salzgries, Fleischmarkt, Bauernmarkt, and Graben. 4 people were fatally shot and 23 wounded.
Who Was the Suspect?
The suspect was 20 years old and had Austrian and Macedonian citizenship. He was shot dead near St Rupert’s Church. Authorities said that the killer was armed with an automatic weapon, a pistol, and a machete as well as a fake explosive belt. Fourteen people have been detained in Austria who were linked to the gunman. The interior minister said they were aged 16 to 28, with a migrant background.
Terrorist group Islamic State (IS) claimed on its propaganda outlet Amaq that it was behind the attack.
Response On The Attacks
Austrian Interior Minister Karl Nehammer attributed the attacks on “Islamist terrorist” and commented that they have not experienced such an attack in decades.
“…Austria for more than 75 years has been a strong democracy, a mature democracy, a country whose identity is marked by values and basic rights, with freedom of expression, rule of law, but also tolerance in human coexistence. Yesterday’s attack is an attack on just these values.”Interior Minister Karl Nehammer
Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz has responded to the Vienna attack by urging the European Union to “focus much more strongly on the problem of political Islam in the future”.
Recent Attacks in France
In recent weeks, extremist Islamist violence has become a key issue in France.
On 29th October, a knifeman attacked inside the Notre-Dame basilica in Nice. Three people were killed in the attack. According to reports, the suspect is a Tunisian national born in 1999. President Emmanuel Macron called it an “Islamist terrorist attack”.
Another attack took place outside the French consulate in the Saudi city of Jeddah on Thursday. Earlier this month, a teacher was beheaded by an 18-year-old for showing a cartoon of Prophet Mohammed in class.
Read more about it here: What’s Going On In France: Free Speech, Murder & International Reactions
- ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) is also known as ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and Levant) or their Arabic acronym, Daesh. It was founded by Iraqi terrorist, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.
- Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) chief Masood Azhar was listed as a designated global terrorist by the UN Security Council 1267 Committee in May 2019. These sanctions would result in travel ban, assets freeze and an arms embargo.
- Hezbollah, or “Party of God,” is an extremist group based in Lebanon. It targets Israel and its supporters, including the United States are responsible for the bombing of a Marine base in Lebanon in 1983 that killed more than 250 Americans.
- The Indian Mujahideen is a terrorist group led by Abdul Subhan Qureshi who is now under Delhi Police custody. It was declared a terrorist organisation on 4 June 2010 and banned by the Government of India.
- BBC News – Vienna shooting: What we know about ‘Islamist terror’ attack
- The Indian Express – Vienna shooting leaves 5 dead; witnesses post dramatic videos of attack
- BBC News – Vienna attack: Austria admits failing to act on Slovak warning on gunman
- BBC News – France attack: What we know about the stabbings in Nice