Australian authorities have classified the stabbing incident at a Sydney church as a “terrorist act” driven by religious motives.

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Australian authorities classify Sydney church stabbing as a ‘terrorist act’ driven by religious motives. Stay updated on the investigation.

During mass at the Assyrian Christ The Good Shepherd Church, a 16-year-old attacked a bishop, a priest, and worshippers. While the injuries sustained were not life-threatening, including those of the assailant, the event prompted unrest in Wakeley.

The police, drawing from the live-streamed footage of the attack, have labeled it an act of religious extremism, though they have not disclosed the religion of the perpetrator. The assailant’s assault on Father Isaac Royel and Bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel, a figure known for his controversial yet popular sermons, incited outrage among the community, leading to clashes with law enforcement.

The incident sparked further concern as violent posts circulated on social media, fueling anger among viewers. Prime Minister Anthony Albanese condemned the attack, emphasizing Australia’s commitment to peace and denouncing violent extremism. He urged against vigilante actions and expressed worry over the role of social media in exacerbating tensions.

In response to the dissemination of offensive content, the government demanded swift removal from platforms like Facebook and Twitter. The NSW Police Commissioner Karen Webb highlighted the severity of the situation, affirming the victims’ critical condition and the suspect’s intentions to intimidate both physical and virtual attendees of the service.

The perpetrator, known to law enforcement but not on any terror watchlist, has a history of knife-related incidents, raising questions about previous interventions and prevention measures. As the investigation unfolds, authorities have vowed to bring the perpetrator to justice, while also addressing concerns over community safety and support for emergency responders.

The Assyrian community, shaken by the attack, has rallied around Bishop Emmanuel, urging respect for his privacy and condemning violence. Despite his controversial past, he remains a respected figure within the community, known for his advocacy and leadership.

The incident comes amid heightened anxiety following recent violent events in Sydney, underscoring the need for unity and resilience in the face of adversity. As authorities pursue justice and community leaders advocate for peace, the Wakeley neighborhood grapples with the aftermath, reaffirming its commitment to harmony and solidarity amidst adversity.

 

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Source: BBC

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