A 27-year-old Brooklyn-based, ISIS-inspired Bangladeshi man detonated an “effectively low-tech device” in an underground walkway linking the Port Authority bus terminal and the Times Square subway station Monday morning at 7:20 am.
The injured Bangladeshi has been identified as Akayed Ullah and is now under police custody being treated at the Bellevue Hospital for burns and lacerations on his abdomen and hands, New York City Fire Department Commissioner Daniel Nigro has confirmed.
Fortunately, what could have been a major disaster, ended with minor injuries to four others, mainly headaches and ringing in the ears. Two victims are getting treatment at Mount Sinai West while the other two are being attended to at the Mount Sinai Queens, Nigro said. They are expected to be released soon.
Another photo allegedly of the terrorist: pic.twitter.com/racDVvHxu8
— Joe Borelli (@JoeBorelliNYC) December 11, 2017
“This is New York, the reality is that we are a target by many who would like to make a statement against democracy, against freedom,” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in a news conference.
“Fortunately for us, the bomb partially detonated,” Cuomo said. “It was not a sophisticated device. It was a homemade device. He did detonate it, but it did not fully have the effect that he was hoping for. The explosive chemical did ignite. It was in a pipe, but the pipe itself did not explode. So he wound up hurting himself.”
“Anyone can go on the internet and download garbage and vileness on how to put together an amateur-level explosive device, and that is the reality that we live with,” Gov. Cuomo also said during the press conference.
“The counter-reality is that this is New York and we all pitch together and we are a savvy people and we keep our eyes open and that’s what ‘see something, say something’ is all about. And we have the best law enforcement on the globe and we’re all working together extraordinarily well,’ he added.
“This was an attempted terror attack and thank God the perpetrator did not achieve his ultimate goals,” New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said.
“There are also no credible and specific threats against New York City at this time,” de Blasio assured.
Police Commissioner James O’Neill said that Ullah intentionally detonated the “improvised low-tech explosive device attached to his body.”
The pipe bomb was attached to Ullah’s body with Velcro and zip ties, said John Miller, NYPD deputy commissioner of intelligence and counterterrorism.
Panicked commuters piled on to escalators to get out of the station after the explosion which occurred just after 7:20 am
According to Department of Homeland Security Press Secretary Tyler Houlton, Ullah entered the United States in 2011 on a passport displaying an F43 family immigrant visa adding that he “is a lawful permanent resident.”
While Ullah’s attack was ISIS-inspired, he had no direct links with them, Law enforcement officials told The Associated Press.
Marlyn Yu Sherlock, who was at a retail store on the main floor of the terminal, saw people rushing out of the subway entrance, “screaming, running in panic,” reports CNN.
“The PA system was still blaring Christmas carols,” Sherlock said. “It took about four minutes before men in black cop uniforms started shooing people out of Port Authority. As I walked further away from the building, I kept asking the heavily armed cops what it was. They said ‘suspicious package.’
CNN also reported that Francisco Ramirez, a commuter, said he was getting off a bus when he heard two blasts, despite his headphones.
“From what I saw it sounded like it came from the subway, but I’m just guessing,” he said.
“It was two distinct explosions seconds from each other. As I was making my way toward the outside, I kept getting shoved by cops and there were cops at every entrance blocking and there was police and SWAT everywhere,” he added.
“It was scary. It was just a lot of chaos but I didn’t see any injuries.”
The grainy surveillance footage shows commuters walking through the subway when suddenly the space fills up with a burst of smoke. As the smoke clears, a man is seen lying on the floor.
BREAKING VIDEO: Moment of explosion at 42nd St and 8th Avenue in Manhattan pic.twitter.com/JwygdnnwNb
— New York City Alerts (@NYCityAlerts) December 11, 2017