Asylum seekers at Glasgow hotel where knifeman’ killed two’ demonstrated over ‘poor conditions’

Asylum seekers at the Glasgow hotel where a knifeman ‘killed two’ before being shot dead by armed police officers protested against ‘poor conditions’ just days ago, it has been revealed.

The knifeman is feared to have stabbed two people to death and left a 42-year-old police officer fighting for his life after storming the Park Inn Hotel on West George Street at around 1pm. Police Scotland has ruled out terrorism.

Another five people are being treated at the Glasgow Royal Infirmary and the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital, including a 17-year-old boy from Sierra Leone. The ages of the other four injured are 18, 20, 38 and 53.

Concerns had previously been raised by asylum seekers about not having enough money for food, with some living off less than £5-a-day.

Police Scotland was on the scene within two minutes. The force declared a major incident and set up a half-mile cordon in the city centre after the male suspect ran into the Park Inn Hotel and began his attack. 

Eyewitnesses described the bloodbath as ‘carnage’, with one delivery driver saying he tried to save the life of a victim after finding a maintenance man and a receptionist wounded on the floor. 

The hotel is one of six in Glasgow that have been used as accommodation for up to 300 asylum seekers during the coronavirus crisis. It is understood 100 were in the Park Inn at the time of the attack.

Ako Zada from Kurdish Community Scotland said it was unlikely to be a terror attack, and poor conditions at the hotel causing depression and mental illness was to blame.

She added: ‘I believe there’s around 100 in the hotel but new people are always coming and going.

‘They were doing a demonstration last week and in George Square they were attacked by a far right group. They’re not getting £5 a day to buy essentials and don’t know when they will be able to go home.

‘I don’t think it’s a terrorist issue. People have been saying this for months, they’re not well. The hotel is OK for a couple of weeks but not three months.

‘It’s depression and it’s a mental health issue. I’m very sad and devastated.’ 

It has been confirmed the attacker was shot dead by armed police after the rampage. 

One video from the scene shows a male police officer lying on the floor outside the hotel after being stabbed in the leg with another man sitting on the stairs appearing to hold a bleeding wound on his neck. Another man was shown being taken away in handcuffs after the suspect was shot dead.

The horrifying incident came just six days after three men were murdered in a Reading park in a suspected terror attack – although Police Scotland has not yet given a motive for the Glasgow incident.

One Kurdish community spokesman said the hotel residents had protested about conditions inside, with some developing ‘mental health’ problems during the stay. 

Footage from the scene minutes after the attack showed armed officers storming along West George Street and witnesses described ‘bloodied’ people being taken from the Park Inn hotel on stretchers.

The delivery driver, who asked to be named anonymous, said: ‘The hotel is housing refugees during the coronavirus. I went into the hotel and a guy had stabbed the receptionist and maintenance guy. 

‘He then ran back up to a room. I was trying to stem the blood of the maintenance guy when the armed police rushed in and went up to his room and shot the guy. It was absolute carnage.

‘I was on the floor trying to hold the guy, the maintenance guy – a big puncture wound. It was absolutely horrific’.

Police officers attend the scene after reports of a stabbing rampage in a central Glasgow hotel at around 1pm today

Police officers attend the scene after reports of a stabbing rampage in a central Glasgow hotel at around 1pm today

Police officers attend the scene after reports of a stabbing rampage in a central Glasgow hotel at around 1pm today

These are the chaotic scenes outside the Park Inn Hotel in Glasgow this afternoon after it was swamped with police amid reports someone stormed in with a knife and stabbed two people in the reception. A police officer has also been knifed

These are the chaotic scenes outside the Park Inn Hotel in Glasgow this afternoon after it was swamped with police amid reports someone stormed in with a knife and stabbed two people in the reception. A police officer has also been knifed

These are the chaotic scenes outside the Park Inn Hotel in Glasgow this afternoon after it was swamped with police amid reports someone stormed in with a knife and stabbed two people in the reception. A police officer has also been knifed

A blanket is raised as a body is moved out of the hotel as Glasgow suffered a devastating knife attack in a city centre hotel

A blanket is raised as a body is moved out of the hotel as Glasgow suffered a devastating knife attack in a city centre hotel

A blanket is raised as a body is moved out of the hotel as Glasgow suffered a devastating knife attack in a city centre hotel

Police standing outside the Park Inn Hotel on West George Street in Glasgow today after a major stabbing incident

Police standing outside the Park Inn Hotel on West George Street in Glasgow today after a major stabbing incident

Police standing outside the Park Inn Hotel on West George Street in Glasgow today after a major stabbing incident

Armed officers were filmed running down West George Street with the BBC claiming that the knifeman was shot dead

Armed officers were filmed running down West George Street with the BBC claiming that the knifeman was shot dead

Armed officers were filmed running down West George Street with the BBC claiming that the knifeman was shot

Armed officers were filmed running down West George Street with the BBC claiming that the knifeman was shot

Armed officers were filmed running down West George Street with the BBC claiming that the knifeman was shot dead

The Park Inn Hotel is believed to have been housing asylum seekers in Glasgow (people pictured outside the hotel) - and is one of six city hotels caring for 300 migrants during the coronavirus crisis

The Park Inn Hotel is believed to have been housing asylum seekers in Glasgow (people pictured outside the hotel) - and is one of six city hotels caring for 300 migrants during the coronavirus crisis

The Park Inn Hotel is believed to have been housing asylum seekers in Glasgow (people pictured outside the hotel) – and is one of six city hotels caring for 300 migrants during the coronavirus crisis

The officers responded to reports three people had been killed

The officers responded to reports three people had been killed

Armed police officers walk out through the main entrance of the Park Inn Hotel

Armed police officers walk out through the main entrance of the Park Inn Hotel

Armed police officers made their way out of the Park Inn Hotel in Glasgow as reports emerged three people have been killed

Police and other emergency services attending the scene of a stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel in Glasgow today

Police and other emergency services attending the scene of a stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel in Glasgow today

Police and other emergency services attending the scene of a stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel in Glasgow today

This footage showed armed police removing people from the hotel, who all left with their hands raised, after the horrifying incident

This footage showed armed police removing people from the hotel, who all left with their hands raised, after the horrifying incident

An injured person is taken away on a trolley by paramedics after a major incident in Glasgow where it was reported that multiple people have been stabbed

An injured person is taken away on a trolley by paramedics after a major incident in Glasgow where it was reported that multiple people have been stabbed

This footage showed armed police removing people from the hotel, who all left with their hands raised, after the horrifying incident. An injured person is taken away on a trolley by paramedics after a major incident in Glasgow where it was reported that multiple people have been stabbed

The incident saw the West George Street area of north-west Glasgow shut down with at least  20 police units in attendance

The incident saw the West George Street area of north-west Glasgow shut down with at least  20 police units in attendance

The incident saw the West George Street area of north-west Glasgow shut down with at least  20 police units in attendance 

Radisson Hotel Group, which owns the Park Inn Hotel, said in a statement that it is ‘deeply saddened by the tragic event’ and confirmed  the hotel had been occupied ‘for temporary housing’.

Tom Flanagan Kartunnen, Area Senior Vice President Northern & Western Europe, said: ‘We are deeply saddened by the tragic event that happened today on West George Street in Glasgow. We are working with the hotel owner and all the relevant local authorities, including Police Scotland, to support the investigation. 

‘Police Scotland has confirmed the incident has been contained and there is no further threat to the public. During the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the hotel has been occupied for temporary housing. For more information on the incident, please contact Police Scotland.’

Nicola Sturgeon said her ‘thoughts are with all those people who have been caught up in this terrible incident’ and thanked ‘all of those police officers whose quick and decisive actions contained the incident’. 

The First Minister of Scotland added: ‘It’s been a dreadful afternoon for the city of Glasgow’. 

Prime Minister Boris Johnson tweeted: ‘Deeply saddened by the terrible incident in Glasgow, my thoughts are with all the victims and their families. Thank you to our brave emergency services who are responding.’

Home Secretary Priti Patel said: ‘Deeply alarming reports coming from Glasgow. Please follow police advice and avoid the area. Thoughts are with the emergency services as they continue to respond to this incident.’

Police Scotland Assistant Chief Constable Steve Johnson said: ‘We are continuing to deal with the incident on West George Street, Glasgow and would ask people to avoid the area. However, I would like to reassure the public that this is a contained incident and that the wider public is not at risk.

‘Armed police officers attended the incident and I can confirm that a male suspect was shot by an armed officer. I would like to reassure the public that at this time we are not looking for anyone else in relation to this incident. 

‘I can also confirm that a police officer was injured while dealing with the incident and that officer is receiving treatment in hospital.’ 

A person is wheeled from the hotel by emergency service workers in white suits - but police have said the threat is over

A person is wheeled from the hotel by emergency service workers in white suits - but police have said the threat is over

A person is wheeled from the hotel by emergency service workers in white suits – but police have said the threat is over

police officer staffs a cordon as emergency services attend the scene of a fatal stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel today

police officer staffs a cordon as emergency services attend the scene of a fatal stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel today

police officer staffs a cordon as emergency services attend the scene of a fatal stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel today

A cordon around a half-mile wide encircled the crime scene and is being maintained by a large police presence

A cordon around a half-mile wide encircled the crime scene and is being maintained by a large police presence

A cordon around a half-mile wide encircled the crime scene and is being maintained by a large police presence

Police speak to hotel residents around 30 minutes after the attack took place this afternoon with officers seen taking away evidence in bags

Nicholas, 27, was staying in the hotel and said: ‘I heard people screaming. When I went down to the reception there was blood everywhere. Two of the receptionists had been stabbed, both males. 

‘There was a man who was holding his waist. I told them to stay calm and not worry. I saw another receptionist who was lying on the stairs, they’d been stabbed.

‘There were two police officers so I told them what happened. After I came out from the hotel I heard people say the attacker’s still in the hotel but I didn’t come across him.

‘When I was out of the hotel for ten minutes one of the police officers came out with blood on his face, he had been stabbed. My mum’s still in our room – I’ve told her not to come out.’

Another man, Shaun, said he saw a man enter the reception area and stab two people. He said: ‘I heard loud noises. A woman screaming and man screaming for help, but I couldn’t see from my window what’s going on.

‘I took the stairs to the ground floor and in the reception it was full of blood everywhere on the floor, a receptionist got stabbed. And then when I went out of the entrance, I saw another receptionist got stabbed. The sad part is I know them. I called my mum and told her immediately not to come down from the room.’

Another witness told Radio Clyde News: ‘I came down the stairs and there was blood all over the reception area. I came outside and there was another person lying on the ground receiving treatment.’  

Craig Milroy, who saw the aftermath of the incident from an office building nearby, said he had seen four people taken away in ambulances. He said: ‘I saw a man lying on the ground, of African descent, with no shoes on. He was on the ground with someone holding his side – I don’t know if it was a bullet wound, a stab wound, or what it was.’ 

Mr Milroy said the man was one of the four taken away by medics and believed him to be a victim of an attack. 

Police attend the scene of a fatal stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel in central Glasgow at around 1pm today

Police attend the scene of a fatal stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel in central Glasgow at around 1pm today

Police attend the scene of a fatal stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel in central Glasgow at around 1pm today

Police and other emergency services attending the scene of a stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel in Glasgow today

Police and other emergency services attending the scene of a stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel in Glasgow today

Police and other emergency services attending the scene of a stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel in Glasgow today

Police standing outside the Park Inn Hotel on West George Street in Glasgow today after a major stabbing incident

Police standing outside the Park Inn Hotel on West George Street in Glasgow today after a major stabbing incident

Police standing outside the Park Inn Hotel on West George Street in Glasgow today after a major stabbing incident

Armed police bringing out residents of the Park Inn Hotel on West George Street in Glasgow after a major incident today

Armed police bringing out residents of the Park Inn Hotel on West George Street in Glasgow after a major incident today

Armed police bringing out residents of the Park Inn Hotel on West George Street in Glasgow after a major incident today

Armed police bringing out residents of the Park Inn Hotel on West George Street in Glasgow after a major incident today

Armed police bringing out residents of the Park Inn Hotel on West George Street in Glasgow after a major incident today

He added: ‘We were still standing outside, after that the police all came down, the riot police and triage team told us to go back in and lock the door.’

The Park Inn Glasgow, which is owned by the Radisson chain, is believed to have been housing asylum seekers since April – and its website states that it is temporarily closed until August 2.

Ako Zada from Kurdish Community Scotland said the people living there had carried out a demonstration last week over poor conditions – but were then attacked by a far right group.

He added: ‘They’re not getting £5 a day to buy essentials and don’t know when they will be able to go home.

‘People have been saying this for months, they’re not well. The hotel is OK for a couple of weeks but not three months. It’s depression and it’s a mental health issue. I’m very sad and devastated.’    

Mohammad Asif, from the Glasgow-based Afghan Human Rights Foundation, tweeted today: ‘Multiple people attacked and stabbed in Glasgow city centre Park Inn hotel. The hotel also houses asylum seekers.

‘I am told by an asylum seeker resident in the hotel that they are not allowed to speak to anyone. He said many people have stabbed by knives.’   

Armed officers were patrolling the area but believe the threat was neutralised after the suspect was shot

Armed officers were patrolling the area but believe the threat was neutralised after the suspect was shot

Armed officers were patrolling the area but believe the threat was neutralised after the suspect was shot

Officers drove back people as the cordon grew around the hotel, which is said to have faced protests in recent weeks

Officers drove back people as the cordon grew around the hotel, which is said to have faced protests in recent weeks

Officers drove back people as the cordon grew around the hotel, which is said to have faced protests in recent weeks

Specialist police officers speak via radios after they gunned down the male suspect this afternoon

Specialist police officers speak via radios after they gunned down the male suspect this afternoon

Specialist police officers speak via radios after they gunned down the male suspect this afternoon

Police officers including forensics officers attend the scene of a fatal stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel today

Police officers including forensics officers attend the scene of a fatal stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel today

Police officers including forensics officers attend the scene of a fatal stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel today

Horrified witnesses claim ‘multiple’ people may have been stabbed in a broad daylight knife attack. One told MailOnline: ‘It’s shocking. Things have been so quiet with lockdown. 

‘I heard the sirens and then there were police, some with automatic weapons and bullet proof vests running around. Somebody told me there was blood all over the road. I’m so upset and just want to get home.’ 

Witness Callum O’Brien, who lives in a flat near the scene, told Mirror Online: ‘I didn’t see the attack and first I was aware was from multiple sirens outside.

‘I can’t see round the corner to where the attack took place but I have seen four people taken into ambulances. They were all taken on stretchers. One was very bloodied, the others not so much.’

He added moments later: ‘A fifth has just been taken into an ambulance and was surrounded by paramedic and police and being given oxygen, noticeably more so than the others so this may have been the attacker but don’t have anything else to go on other than that sorry.’

A witness named Louisa told Sky News: ‘I was in a building on West George Street, I was higher up so I could see what was going on. We’re inside, we’re safe on a high floor, we’re staying put for the time being.

‘In the aftermath I saw people who were being treated, there were covered in blood, there was blood all over them. There were armed police telling people to come out of the hotel with their hands up… there was a large group of them. I saw at least three being treated at the scene before they were taken away in ambulances.’

There were police cars, ambulances all over the street. Another witness told the Daily Record: ‘We’ve barricaded our offices because we were being safe in case it was terrorism. This is really scary.’

Forensic officers at the scene in West George Street, Glasgow, where a man has been shot by an armed officer after another officer was injured during an attack today

Forensic officers at the scene in West George Street, Glasgow, where a man has been shot by an armed officer after another officer was injured during an attack today

Forensic officers at the scene in West George Street, Glasgow, where a man has been shot by an armed officer after another officer was injured during an attack today

Police officers push back a cordon as they attend the scene of a fatal stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel today

Police officers push back a cordon as they attend the scene of a fatal stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel today

Police officers push back a cordon as they attend the scene of a fatal stabbing incident at the Park Inn Hotel today

The hotel has been evacuated and are being helped by police officers and paramedics

The hotel has been evacuated and are being helped by police officers and paramedics

The hotel has been evacuated and are being helped by police officers and paramedics

A police officer gestures at the scene of reported multiple stabbings at West George Street in Glasgow today

A police officer gestures at the scene of reported multiple stabbings at West George Street in Glasgow today

A police officer gestures at the scene of reported multiple stabbings at West George Street in Glasgow today

The Scottish Defence League held a rally in Glasgow’s George Square on June 17 and clashed with asylum seekers. George Square is located just a five-minute walk away from the Park Inn hotel. 

The asylum seekers’ rally was organised by the group No Evictions, which is campaigning for those who have been allegedly removed from their homes and rehouses in the ‘cramped and degrading’ hotels.

Mark White, from Sky News, said: ‘Several people have been injured in a serious incident in Glasgow city centre. Armed police have sealed off West George Street. Eyewitnesses have told they saw people, bloodied, being taken on stretchers from the Park Inn hotel.’ 

LBC reporter Fraser Knight posted: ‘Reports of multiple stabbings in Glasgow City Centre and a potential major incident with upwards of 20 police vehicles, riot shields, armed officers and paramedics on West George Street

‘Around 20 police vehicles, armed officers, sniffer dogs and riot shields are on the scene at West George Street in Glasgow. Lots of shouting and huge number of paramedics in hazmat suits.

‘Huge police and ambulance response to an incident on West George Street in Glasgow – reports of a police officer being stabbed.’

The Scottish Police Federation (SPF) has said an officer has been stabbed during a major incident in Glasgow. 

The SPF tweeted: ‘We are aware of reports a police officer has been stabbed in an incident in Glasgow city centre. Our officials are in attendance to provide all necessary support. 

‘Please allow our collages the space to do their jobs. Further updates will be provided when we are able to do so.’

It added: ‘We appreciate families of police officers in £Glasgow will be anxious to hear that a police officer has been stabbed. Please be aware the family of the officer has been notified and is being supported by the service.

In a statement on Twitter, police said the incident is ‘contained’ and there is no danger to the general public.

Greater Glasgow Police tweeted: ‘Emergency services are currently dealing with an incident on West George Street in Glasgow. The street is currently closed off and the public are asked to avoid the area at present.

‘The situation is contained at this time and there is no danger to the general public.’

Scotland First Minister Nicola Sturgeon tweeted: ‘Please follow advice to avoid the West George Street area of Glasgow while @policescotland deal with this ongoing incident.’

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