Several people stabbed in Finnish city of Turku

Several people were stabbed in an knife attack in the Finnish city of Turku on Friday but it was not immediately clear if this was a militant action or had some other motive.

Police said they arrested one person after a shootout and were hunting for other possible attackers. They warned people to stay away from the city as they reinforced security nationwide.

The Turun Sanomat newspaper reported that at least one person was killed in the attack. Newspaper Helsingin Sanomat said eight people had been taken to hospital following the stabbings, some of them are in critical condition.

Interior Minister Paula Risikko told Helsingin Sanomat she did not yet know whether the attack was related to terrorism. Finland is traditionally peaceful but the Finnish Security Intelligence Service raised the terrorism threat level in June, saying it had become aware of more serious terrorism-related plans in Finland.

Witness Laura Laine said she was alerted by hearing a young woman screaming loudly at the corner of the market square. “We saw a man at the square, he had knife in his hand, and he was swinging it in the air. We understood he had stabbed someone,” she told Finnish broadcaster YLE. Turku lies on Finland’s southwest coast about 160 km (100 miles) west of the capital Helsinki. (Reuters)

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Several people stabbed in Finnish city of Turku

Rescue personnel have cordoned off the area at the Turku Market Square in the Finnish city of Turku where several people were stabbed on Aug. 18, 2017. (Roni Lehti/AFP/Getty Images)

Several people stabbed in Finnish city of Turku

Rescue personnel have covered a stabbing victim’s body at the Turku Market Square in the Finnish city of Turku where several people were stabbed on Aug. 18, 2017. (Roni Lehti/AFP/Getty Images)

Several people stabbed in Finnish city of Turku

Police officers stand next to a person lying on the pavement in the Finnish city of Turku where several people were stabbed on Aug. 18, 2017. (Kirsi Kanerva/AFP/Getty Images)

Several people stabbed in Finnish city of Turku

An armed police officer stands guard at the Turku Market Square in the Finnish city of Turku where several people were stabbed on Aug. 18, 2017. (Roni Lehti/AFP/Getty Images)

Several people stabbed in Finnish city of Turku

Rescue personnel have cordoned off the area at the Turku Market Square in the Finnish city of Turku where several people were stabbed on Aug. 18, 2017. (Roni Lehti/AFP/Getty Images)

Several people stabbed in Finnish city of Turku

Turku Market Square on Aug. 18, 2017, with a yellow ambulance on the corner of the square (behind red car). Police in Finland say they have shot a man in the leg after he was suspected of stabbing several people in the western city of Turku. (Lehtikuva via AP)

Several people stabbed in Finnish city of Turku

Finnish police patrols in front of the Cenral Railway Station in Helsinki, on Aug. 18, 2017.
(Linda Manner/AFP/Getty Images)

Several people stabbed in Finnish city of Turku

Armed police officers secure the area after several people were stabbed on the Market Square in Turku, Finland, Aug. 18, 2017. (Roni Lehti/Lehtikuva via AP)

Several people stabbed in Finnish city of Turku

An armed police officer on the Turku Market Square, Aug. 18, 2017, after several people were stabbed. (Roni Lehti/Lehtikuva via AP)

Several people stabbed in Finnish city of Turku

Ambulance cars gather at the site of a multiple stabbing on the Market Square in Turku, Finland, Aug. 18, 2017. (Ari Matti Ruuska/Turun Sanom/REX/Shutterstock)

Several people stabbed in Finnish city of Turku

Blood stains remain on the sidewalk at the site of one of the multiple stabbings, on Puutori Square in Turku, Finland, Aug. 18, 2017. (Ari Matti Ruuska/Turun Sanom/REX/Shutterstock)

Several people stabbed in Finnish city of Turku

The shrouded body of a stabbing victim on the Turku Market Square on Aug. 18, 2017, after several people were stabbed. (Roni Lehti/Lehtikuva via AP)

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