A non-fatal stabbing in Surrey is being treated as a terrorism incident by police.
Officers were called to reports of a man acting aggressively and shouting racist comments while carrying a baseball bat and a knife in Stanwell at 10.30pm on Saturday night.
Shortly afterwards, police received reports that a man had been stabbed – and detectives believe the same suspect is behind both incidents.
Armed police urgently began searching for the suspect, and a 50-year-old man was subsequently arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and racially aggravated public order.
Surrey Police said the 19-year-old man who was stabbed sustained non-life threatening injuries and is being treated in hospital.
Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu, head of counter-terrorism policing, said: “Whilst this investigation is still in its infancy, it has hallmarks of a terror event, inspired by the far right, and therefore it has been declared a terrorism incident.
“This allows us to use all of the specialist capabilities available to establish the full circumstances of this attack.
“Police are committed to tackling all forms of toxic extremist ideology, which has the potential to threaten public safety and security.”
Mr Basu added that local officers have been providing reassurance and protective security advice to communities, places of worship and businesses.
Detective Superintendent Karen Mizzi added: “This is a shocking and worrying incident and we are working to support our colleagues at Counter Terrorism Police South East with their enquiries and will continue to liaise with the local community.
“I want to reassure residents that we are doing all we can to ensure a thorough investigation takes place and we are supporting those affected by last night’s events.
“Patrols will be stepped up across Stanwell in order to provide assurances to those in the area specifically around mosques and increasing engagement with communities of all faiths, giving advice on how people and places can protect themselves.”