World News

Sydney church stabbing declared a terrorist attack

Australian police have declared Monday’s stabbing at a Sydney church a religiously motivated “terrorist act”. A 16-year-old boy was arrested after a bishop, a priest and churchgoers were attacked during mass at the Assyrian Christ The Good Shepherd Church. At least four people suffered “non-life-threatening” injuries, police say. The attacker was also hurt.

The incident was captured on a church livestream and quickly triggered unrest in the suburb of Wakeley.
Australian police define terror offences as being ideologically motivated. Investigations are still under way, but they say they are satisfied this is a case of religious extremism.

Authorities have repeatedly declined to state the religion of the alleged attacker. Graphic videos of the attack – and the aftermath – spread like wildfire on social media on Monday night, drawing an angry crowd to the Assyrian Orthodox Church, which is about 35km south-west of the city centre.

There the crowd – hundreds of people – violently clashed with police, who were guarding the church where the attacker was being treated by paramedics.

Two officers were injured, one with a broken jaw after he was hit with a brick and fence palings, and 10 police cars destroyed. The violence similarly left paramedics fearing for their safety and “holed up” inside the church for more than three hours. Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has convened an emergency meeting of national security agencies, calling the attack “disturbing”.

“We’re a peace-loving nation… There’s no place for violent extremism.” Tying to quell further violence, he urged that people “not take the law into their own hands”.

Speaking to media on Tuesday morning, New South Wales (NSW) Police Commissioner Karen Webb said the bishop and priest were undergoing surgery and were “lucky to be alive”.

The church has named the priest as Father Isaac Royel and the bishop as Mar Mari Emmanuel. Ordained in 2011, Bishop Emmanuel is seen as a popular and controversial figure, and his sermons have received millions of views on social media.

Source: BBC

In other news – Beyoncé’s Cowboy Carter Scores Second Week Atop Billboard 200

Beyoncé’s Cowboy Carter holds atop the Billboard 200 albums chart (dated April 20), after debuting at No. 1 a week ago, as the set earned 128,000 equivalent album units in the U.S. in the week ending April 11 (down 69%), according to Luminate.


With a second week in the lead, Cowboy Carter has the most weeks at No. 1 for any Beyoncé album since her self-titled set spent three weeks at No. 1 (its first three weeks on the chart), in December 2013 and January 2014. Read more