Two killed in stabbing at Lisbon Muslim center

Suspected attacker taken to hospital after being ‘neutralized’ by police; PM says incident an isolated criminal act

A police officer walks at the entrance of an Ismaili Muslim center in Lisbon, Portugal, Tuesday, March 28, 2023. (AP/Armando Franca)
A police officer walks at the entrance of an Ismaili Muslim center in Lisbon, Portugal, Tuesday, March 28, 2023. (AP/Armando Franca)

LISBON, Portugal — Portuguese police shot a man suspected of stabbing two people to death at an Ismaili Muslim center in Lisbon, authorities said Tuesday.

Police were called to the center late Tuesday morning where they encountered a suspect “armed with a large knife,” a police statement said.

Police ordered him to surrender but he advanced toward them and was “neutralized,” the statement said. The suspect was taken to a Lisbon hospital where he was in police custody.

Several other people were wounded, according to the statement, but it provided no further details.

Prime Minister António Costa said police shot the suspect. Costa told reporters the attack was “a criminal act.”

“Everything points to this being an isolated incident,” Costa said, without elaborating.

There was no immediate word on the identity of those killed.

Police officers stand outside an Ismaili Muslim center in Lisbon, Portugal, Tuesday, March 28, 2023. (AP/Armando Franca)

Armed police from a special operations unit could be seen forming a perimeter outside the building. Costa said police were investigating the attack and it was too soon to speculate about a motive.

The Shia Imami Ismaili Muslims, generally known as the Ismailis, belong to the Shia branch of Islam, according to their website. The Ismaili Muslims are a culturally diverse community living in more than 25 countries around the world, it says.

Portugal hasn’t recorded any significant terror attacks in recent decades, and religious violence is virtually unheard of.

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