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Suspected acid attack injures six in London, teen arrested
A suspected acid attack after an altercation between two groups left six people injured in a shopping centre in London, with police arresting a 15-year-old boy in connection with the case.
Scotland Yard said its officers had responded to an altercation between two groups of men inside Stratford Shopping Centre in east London last evening during which a "noxious substance" was thrown.
When the liquid was thrown, both groups ran from the scene and were later treated for "non-life threatening and non-life changing injuries".
As the injuries were in a number of different locations, there were initial fears that people had been sprayed at random.
Metropolitan Police Chief Superintendent Ade Adelekan, the Borough Commander for the local Newham area, said: "I would like to be very clear concerning this incident. What initially may have been perceived as a number of random attacks has, on closer inspection, been found to be one incident involving two groups of males."
"I recognise the lasting impact on victims of corrosive substance attacks. Our response to such attacks is continually improving through training and joint working with partners and we are working with the Home Office to explore possible restrictions around the sale of corrosive substances in conjunction with retailers and manufacturers."
Witnesses at the scene said an argument had broken out among a group of people.
An assistant manager at Burger King in the area said one of the victims had run into the fast food chain to "wash acid off his face".
Paul Gibson, Assistant Director of Operations at London Ambulance Service, said: “We sent a number of resources including ambulance crews, paramedics in cars and members of our hazardous area response team.
"The first of our medics arrived within 10 minutes of the first emergency call and worked closely with our colleagues from the Metropolitan Police, British Transport Police and London Fire Brigade making sure patients received the medical help they needed as quickly as possible.
"We treated a total of six patients, three of whom were taken to London hospitals.”
The Hazardous Area Response Team is a group of specially trained ambulance crews who provide life-saving medical care in hostile environments.
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