Barcelona ‘a ghost town’ in wake of ter­ror at­tack

Surrey Advertiser - - Front Page -

AN Egham res­i­dent has de­tailed her ex­pe­ri­ence in Barcelona as the af­ter­math of Thurs­day night’s (Au­gust 18) ter­ror­ist at­tack along Las Ram­blas un­folds.

Joely Stevens, from Egham, has been in Barcelona since Au­gust 3 and has been stay­ing near the cen­tre of the Cata­lan city.

Speak­ing to Sur­rey Ad­ver­tiser, she said fol­low­ing the at­tack, peo­ple could be seen talk­ing fran­ti­cally on mo­bile phones and in­for­ma­tion about what had hap­pened was slow.

She said: “The at­mos­phere up un­til yes­ter­day was happy, ev­ery­one goes about their daily busi­ness and there’s many peo­ple drink­ing and eat­ing in the restau­rants and streets, gen­uinely a pos­i­tive at­mos­phere.

“I hap­pened to be in my apart­ment yes­ter­day [Thurs­day] mak­ing a late lunch when I heard the news.

“At first every­thing seemed re­ally slow, we re­lied on English news re­ports on our phone to work out what was hap­pen­ing.

“The re­ports were slow and we were un­sure what was hap­pen­ing. I got a call from a friend at a Span­ish air­port near Gre­nada who told me mostly what was go­ing on.”

By then Span­ish TV were ad­vis­ing peo­ple to avoid the Place de Catalunya district where ter­ror­ist at­tack hap­pened.

She added: “From our bal­cony we saw some peo­ple just walk­ing their dogs as usual, and oth­ers quite fran­tic on their mo­bile phones.

“Our apart­ment is ap­prox­i­mately 10-15 minute walk from the at­tack, so very close. At around 11pm we left the apart­ment to get some food.

“We no­ticed the fa­mous tapas street out­side our apart­ment was com­pletely shut and like a ghost town, which is un­usual for a city that’s of­ten still awake at 3am.

“How­ever fur­ther into the city at Par­al­lel Street, the next main Street to La Ram­blas, some shops were still shut but there was still many peo­ple walk­ing about and go­ing about their lives as nor­mal.

“Fi­nally headed out this morn­ing to get cof­fee and whilst every­thing is open again it does seem slightly qui­eter.”

Pedes­tri­ans in Las Ram­blas were knocked down by the speed­ing van in the ter­ror at­tack.

Isis has claimed re­spon­si­bil­ity for the atroc­ity which left 13 peo­ple dead and more than 100 in­jured – 10 of whom were se­ri­ously hurt.

Just eight hours af­ter the at­tack in Barcelona, a sim­i­lar in­ci­dent hap­pened in Cam­brils. One woman died in hos­pi­tal af­ter an Audi A3 ploughed into pedes­tri­ans. Five peo­ple and a po­lice of­fi­cer were hurt.

Af­ter the at­tack­ers’ ve­hi­cle over­turned, the five peo­ple who got out were shot by po­lice and all died. Some of them were wear­ing fake sui­cide belts.

Peo­ple across the world have joined in sol­i­dar­ity, in­clud­ing F1 driver Fer­nando Alonso, whose team, McLaren is based in Wok­ing.

AP Photo/Manu Fer­nan­dez

Peo­ple in Barcelona gather next to can­dles and flow­ers placed to com­mem­o­rate those killed and wounded in the re­cent ter­ror at­tack.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.