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ISIS Claims Responsibility for NYC Truck Rampage, Calls Suspect ‘Soldier of the Caliphate'

ISIS has an interest in taking credit for attacks carried out by individuals who are self-radicalized

What to Know

  • ISIS has claimed responsibility for the Tribeca truck rampage on Tuesday, but offers no evidence to support their claim
  • Sayfullo Saipov is accused of driving a truck down a Manhattan bike path, killing 8 and injuring 12
  • Two neighbors say they saw Saipov and two men driving around in a Home Depot rental truck similar to the one used in the attack for weeks

ISIS has claimed responsibility after a man plowed a rental truck into pedestrians and cyclists in lower Manhattan in what authorities have called a terror attack. 

In the terror organization's latest newsletter, released Thursday, the group called Sayfullo Habibullaevic Saipov a "soldier of the Caliphate" after Tuesday's attack on the Hudson River Greenway. But ISIS writers offered no evidence to support their claim, and it's unknown whether the organization directed the attack or if Saipov -- who left a note in the truck that translated to "ISIS endures forever" -- was merely inspired by the group. Authorities have also said he appears to be a "lone wolf" attacker. 

President Donald Trump said Friday after ISIS' claims that the military is attacking the terror grou "10 times harder." He also called Saipov a "Degenerate Animal" in a tweet earlier in the day

Saipov was arrested on terror charges after police said he drove a Home Depot truck down the bike path from Houston to Chambers streets Tuesday afternoon, hitting and killing eight people and injuring a dozen more.

Authorities said he also slammed into a school bus parked at P.S. 89 before running through traffic with a pellet gun and a paintball gun.

Police shot and detained Saipov -- who authorities said had been planning the attack for months. According to a criminal complaint, he asked for ISIS flags to be displayed in his hospital room and also considered putting them on the truck used in the attack but decided against it because he did not want to draw attention. 

Saipov, an immigrant from Uzbekistan, actively read ISIS propaganda, a review of his online accounts showed. He has not entered a plea in the case, and his attorney, David Patton, said they were not seeking bail. 

ISIS has an interest in taking credit for attacks carried out by individuals who are self-radicalized. For instance, Orlando nightclub gunman Omar Mateen said he acted on behalf of the group, which claimed him as a "soldier of the caliphate," but there was also no evidence he was in contact with the group in that case.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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