Swiss police say stabbings, fire on train injure 6

Published Aug. 14, 2016

BERLIN — A Swiss man set a fire and stabbed people on a train in Switzerland's northeast, wounding six people as well as himself, police said Saturday.

Police in St. Gallen canton said the incident happened at 2:20 p.m. Saturday as the train neared the station in Salez, near the border with Liechtenstein.

They said the 27-year-old suspect had at least one knife and poured out a flammable liquid, which caught fire.

Police were investigating the attacker's motive. Switzerland's 20 Minuten newspaper reported on its website that police did not believe the incident was terrorist-related.

Police spokesman Bruno Metzger said that the assailant poured the flammable liquid on one woman, and that it appeared to have caught fire when it came into contact with oxygen.

Police said the wounded were a 6-year-old child, a 17-year-old boy and girl, two women ages 34 and 43, and a 50-year-old man. Some of the injuries were said to be serious but there were no further details.

In addition to large police presence, the local fire department responded along with three rescue helicopters, two emergency doctors, three ambulances and railroad authorities.

In July, a refugee from Afghanistan attacked four tourists on a German train, then stabbed a woman as he fled from the train. All survived. Police shot and killed the attacker.

Later in the month, a teen with an ax and knife attacked passengers on another train in Germany, injuring a score of people. He was shot and killed by police as he tried to escape.

Last September, a heavily armed gunman opened fire on a high-speed Amsterdam-Paris train, but he was overpowered by two young American soldiers and their companion.