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Knife and flammables

No terrorist link in Swiss train attack

Six people were injured in the attack, including a child. (SRF-SWI)

Six people were injured in the attack, including a child.


Police say an attack on a train on the eastern Swiss border was not connected to terrorism. One woman and the attacker died after the incident.

A 27-year-old Swiss man attacked several passengers on the train on Saturday afternoon using a knife and flammable liquid. A 34-year-old woman died from her injuries on Sunday. The attacker was also confirmed dead after suffering serious burns. Police were not able to question him before he died. 

Five other people were also injured. A 17-year-old girl and a six-year-old child are in a serious condition. A 50-year-old man and a 43-year-old woman are also being treated. 

Video footage showed the man using a knife in the attack and igniting flammable liquid. When the train pulled into Salez station, a passer-by dragged the attacker onto the platform, preventing the situation from worsening. This person also had to be treated for injuries. 

The footage has led the police to believe the attacker was acting alone. 

"To date there is no evidence this was a terrorist attack or politically motivated," said a police statement issued on Sunday. A spokesman confirmed the man had been Swiss, from a canton bordering St Gallen, and did not have an immigration background. He did not have a criminal record. 

The train and flammable liquid were being examined by forensics.

The attack occurred at 2:20pm, near Salez station on the route between Buchs and Sennwald, on the Liechtenstein border. Around 60 other passengers were on the train when it happened.

Around 90 ambulance, fire and police officers were on the scene on Saturday.  

St Gallen's prosecutor's office has opened a criminal investigation into the incident and the attacker's home has been searched. 

Security surveillance on trains remains unchanged pending the results of the investigation, the Swiss Federal Railways confirmed. 


swissinfo.ch and agencies


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