Britain has raised its terror threat level to severe, its second-highest level, following recent attacks in Austria and France.
The threat level of severe is defined as an attack is considered highly likely. The level had previously been at substantial, meaning an attack is likely.
Five people died, including an assailant, and 17 others were wounded in a shooting in the heart of Vienna hours before a coronavirus lockdown started, Austrian authorities said Tuesday.
The dead attacker was a 20-year-old Austrian-North Macedonian dual national who had a previous terror conviction.
Two men and two women died from their injuries in the attack Monday evening, Chancellor Sebastian Kurz said. The suspected attacker was shot and killed by police.
Vienna’s hospital service said seven people were in life-threatening condition Tuesday after the attack, the Austrian news agency APA reported. In total, 17 people were being treated in hospitals, with gunshot wounds but also cuts.
“It is now confirmed that yesterday’s attack was clearly an Islamist terror attack,” Kurz said. “It was an attack out of hatred – hatred for our fundamental values, hatred for our way of life, hatred for our democracy in which all people have equal rights and dignity.”
Interior Minister Karl Nehammer later told APA that the dead assailant, who had roots in the Balkan nation of North Macedonia, had a previous conviction under a law that punishes membership in terrorist organizations.
The attacker, named as Kujtim Fejzulai, was sentenced to 22 months in prison in April 2019 because he had tried to travel to Syria to join the Islamic State group. He was granted early release in December under juvenile law.