ISIS claims responsibility of the mall stabbing in Minnesota that left nine people injured yesterday.
The Amaq news agency — considered one of the Islamic State’s media mouthpieces — released news that the lone man who conducted the vicious attack was a “soldier of the ISIS”. The same was then reported by the Associated Press. However, no responsibility was claimed for the Chelsea blast in New York City.
While the attack on the Crossroads Center mall at St. Cloud in Minnesota was done by a man who was unaccompanied, the Islamic State had given a call out for terrorist activities to take place in areas that support an anti-ISIS propaganda, to which the man supposedly responded through the stabbing attack.
All nine of the injured are expected to make a full recovery from the stabbing. The attacker was shot dead by a police officer who was off-duty.
The ISIS claims responsibility in the wake of the attacks even though it is not certain whether they were informed of the attack beforehand or even knew of it while it was taking place. Increasingly, the organization has been encouraging single-person terror attacks by lone-wolf “soldiers” across the world.
The New York Times report of the claims made by ISIS mentions that the Amaq News Agency bulletin announced that the ISIS was taking credit for the vocation of the mall attacker.
“…[The] executor of the stabbing attacks in #Minnesota yesterday was a soldier of the Islamic State.”
The report further draws attention to the fact that the attacker had mentioned “Allah” and according to the police had asked at least one victim if he was a person of Muslim faith.
While this does not expressly point to the role of the ISIS in acting as a distant trigger behind the attack, it does perhaps signify the extent to which the perpetrator had been indoctrinated in radical violence in the name of religion — something that the ISIS aims and claims to do on a global scale among the Muslim population.
The ISIS claims have been made in the light of the time of the attack — it was carried out right after a worldwide call to arms was made by the Islamic State.
As reported upon by Reuters, the statement made by ISIS to the Amaq news agency delivers with clarity, the message of reaching out to target anti-ISIS countries acting as a united front against them.
“…[He] carried out the operation in response to calls to target the citizens of countries belonging to the crusader coalition.”
Reuters, however, could not initially confirm the authenticity of the claim.
In the light of the recent ISIS claims, the mall attack is being viewed as an act of targeted and intentional terrorism by the FBI, as tweeted about by AP.
The Jerusalem Post quoted the police chief of St Cloud on its report on the ISIS claims. At a news conference following the attack, William Blair Anderson did not speak of the stabbings as a terrorist attack and confessed to not knowing the source of them.
“Whether that was a terrorist attack or not, I’m not willing to say that right now because we just don’t know. We’ll figure out what this is and when we do we will be transparent about it.”
The ISIS claims come at a time when there is not only heightened levels of fear and panic in the U.S. regarding the safety of public spaces, but also daily instances like the explosion in Chelsea in New York where nearly 29 were injured.
There has been a remarked escalation of public angst on social media. Some users have profiled the attacker already, but the claims to have identified the radical have not yet been established by any authority.
[Featured Image by Stephanie Keith/Getty Images]