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Major incident declared after multiple stabbings in Birmingham

Police were called in the early hours of Sunday.

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Evidence is collected on Hurst Street in Birmingham city centre. Photo: SnapperSK

Multiple people have been injured and a major incident declared after a series of stabbings in Birmingham.

Police and paramedics were called to reports of a knife attack in the city centre in the early hours of Sunday, with further stabbings then being reported.

Eye-witnesses reported as many as eight people were injured following the disorder in Birmingham.

One witness said that the attack seemed like “one group of boys against another group of boys”.

The violence happened on various streets across the city centre, including around the Arcadian Centre and near the A38 Bristol Street.

Large parts of the city centre remained cordoned off this morning as a result including much of the Arcadian Centre, Snow Hill, Hurst Street and Irving Street.

A police tent on Irving Street. Photo: SnapperSK
Police on Barwick Street. Photo: SnapperSK

West Midlands Police said there were “a number” of victims, but the severity of their injuries was not immediately known.

The force denied reports of gunshots being fired, and added “it would not be appropriate to speculate on the causes of the incident”.

Raja Dass, who witnessed part of the incident near the O2 Academy on Irving Street, said: "Two people were stabbed in the neck, they were put in an ambulance and taken away."

The police cordon on Hurst Street. Photo: SnapperSK

Another witness, Cara, told BBC Radio 5 Live she had heard racial slurs during the incident, adding that it was a “multicultural night” in the clubs near the Arcadian Centre.

She added: “They were not just having an argument and then fighting, it was straight into fists being thrown. There was not much talking going on.

“Drinks were being dropped, bottles that they had obviously bought in the club, rings were falling off so jewellery was going everywhere, clothes were being torn.

“One of the males actually ended up with his hair being pulled out and left with a bald patch.”

Police tape at the Arcadian Centre in Birmingham. Photo: SnapperSK

The Arcadian venue, located around five minutes’ walk from Birmingham New Street station, is a hub of restaurants, bars, cafes, clubs and hotels.

Featuring an open air central piazza, it is close to the city’s Chinese Quarter and Gay Village areas.

Police said the response would be ongoing “for some time” and urged people to stay away from the area.

The force added: “We are aware of a number of injured people, but at the moment we are not in a position to say how many or how serious.

A forensics specialist in Hurst Street. Photo: SnapperSK

“However, all emergency services are working together at the scene, and making sure that those who are injured receive medical care.

“Work is still going on to establish what has happened, and could take some time before we are in a position to confirm anything.”

The majority of Hurst Street has been taped off by police, in an area which had already been closed off to traffic to aid social distancing.

The police cordon on Barwick Street next to Utopia and Hotel du Vin. Photo: SnapperSK

Several yellow police evidence markers could be seen on the ground, some near to broken glass.

Two forensic tents had also been sited in nearby Irving Street, close to the gates of a primary school.

Roads that were closed as police examined the area this morning included:

  • Streets around the Arcadian Centre

  • Hurst Street at the junction with Bromsgrove Street

  • Irving Street, next to the back of the O2 Academy

  • Barwick Street in Snow Hill, next to Utopia the Country Bar and Hotel du Vin

West Midlands mayor Andy Street said his thoughts are with those affected by the major incident in Birmingham but asked people not to speculate about it.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said those in the vicinity of the major incident in Birmingham should be "very vigilant".

Speaking to Sky News' Sophy Ridge On Sunday programme, Mr Raab said: "My thoughts are with the victims and their families, there is obviously an ongoing police investigation.

"I can't say too much more at this stage but people should be very vigilant if they are in that area."

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