‘IS-Inspired’ Australian Charged With Terrorism After Stabbing

MELBOURNE (Reuters) -
An Islamic State flag is seen in this picture illustration taken February 18, 2016. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo
An Islamic State flag. (Reuters/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo)

A Sydney man was charged on Sunday with committing a terrorist attack and attempted murder that police said seemed to have been inspired by the Islamic State terror group.

The 22-year-old repeatedly stabbed a 59-year-old man who was walking through a park on Saturday and then attacked police who arrived, making statements that they said led them to conclude he was motivated by IS. The names of both men have been withheld by the police.

“We know this person has strong extremist beliefs inspired by ISIS,” New South Wales Police Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn said at a news conference, using an acronym for the terror group originally known as Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

The victim was in critical but stable condition, Burn said.

Australia, a staunch U.S. ally, has been on heightened alert for attacks by home-grown radicals since 2014 and authorities have said they have thwarted a number of plots. There have been several “lone wolf” assaults, including a 2014 cafe siege in Sydney that left two hostages dead.