‘The Year That Was’ is the cover story from the Qatar Today December 2017 – January 2018 issue, covering all the major events that happened globally in the past year. It will be published online in a series of four parts. ‘Terror Attacks’ is part three of the ‘The Year That Was’ story.
Part one: Timeline of the Blockade on Qatar
Part two: World News
Khalid Masood, an English teacher, drove a car onto the pavement and onto the pedestrians on Westminster Bridge. The attack killed six people and injured 49. The incident took place near the British Parliament. Police were unable to find any link with terrorist organisations, but termed the attack as “Islamist-related terrorism”.
Not even three months after the Westminster attack, a van went off the road onto the pavement of London Bridge, killing three pedestrians and injuring many others on June 3. The three riders of the van crashed the vehicle and ran to a nearby market area and began stabbing people in the area. A total of eight deaths were recorded and 48 were injured. The perpetrators were Khuram Shazad Butt, Youssef Zaghba and Rachid Redouane, who were identified as Daesh followers.
Ten Taliban fighters attacked Camp Shaheen, headquarters of the Afghan National Army (ANA) in the Balkh Province. Media reported around 256 people to be dead and around 160 people injured. The attack took place on a Friday, when most of the soldiers were unarmed and were either praying at the mosque or eating. The attack led to the resignation of then minister of defence Abdullah Habibi and Army Chief of Staff General Qadam Shah Shahim on April 24.
During a concert by American singer Ariana Grande at Manchester Arena, a homemade bomb was detonated by 22-year old Salman Ramadan Abedi, which left 23 people dead and over 500 people injured. Abedi was also killed in the suicide attack. According to reports from the coroner, the bomb killed people who were up to 20 metres away. British Prime Minister Theresa May expressed her strong disapproval of the act and offered her condolences to the affected families. As a mark of respect for the people who perished in the attack, a minute’s silence was observed on May 25, 2017.
A truck bomb exploded at a crowded intersection in Kabul, Afghanistan, near the German Embassy killing more than 150 people and injuring over 400. The attack took place in the diplomatic quarter, which is one of the most fortified areas in the city with walls that are 10 feet high, and to enter it one must pass through several check points. Although many suspected the Afghan based Haqqani network, no one claimed responsibility for the attack.
A shooter open fired on a crowd of concert goers at the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival on the Las Vegas Strip in Nevada. The attack left 58 people dead and 546 injured. The shooter was found to be a 64-year old man, Stephen Paddock, who fired more than 1000 shots from his room on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel. Paddock was also found dead in his hotel room with a self-inflicted gunshot. This is considered to be the deadliest mass shooting conducted by an individual in the US.
A truck bombing in Mogadishu, Somalia, caused a massive blast killing over 500 people and injuring more than 300. Sixty-two people were also said to be missing. This was the deadliest attack in Somalia surpassing the bombing in Mogadishu in 2011, which killed 100 people. The bombing was suspected to be the carried out by Al Shabaab, a jihadist group based in East Africa. Somalian President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed declared three days of mourning in response to the attack.