police on Monday wounded and captured an Afghan-born American wanted over bombings in New York and New Jersey, which stoked terror fears less than 50 days before the country’s presidential election.
The bombings Saturday came on the same day as a separate stabbing rampage in Minnesota carried out by a Somali-American with possible links to the Islamic State extremist group.
President Barack Obama, in New York on Monday to attend the U.N. General Assembly with world leaders, called on Americans “not to succumb to fear” in his first remarks about the three Saturday attacks.
Obama stressed that investigators at this point saw “no connection” between the incidents on the East Coast and the Minnesota stabbing, where police said the assailant made “some references to Allah” in carrying out the attack.
Ahmad Khan Rahami, 28, was wounded in a shootout with police in Linden, New Jersey, just four hours after the FBI released a mugshot of him and texted alert messages to millions of people in the greater New York area, describing him as “armed and dangerous.”
ABC News footage showed the bearded Rahami being stretchered into an ambulance, sporting a bloodied bandage on his right arm and moving his head moments after being taken into custody.
Police confirmed his arrest and said two officers were wounded in the shootout.
Rahami was injured in his leg and was undergoing surgery at hospital, one official said. Born in Afghanistan, he worked at a family restaurant in Elizabeth, New Jersey and is a U.S. citizen.
Neither of the wounded officers are in critical condition, the official said.
Evidence ties Rahami to Saturday night’s bombing in New York’s Chelsea neighborhood that injured 29 people and Saturday morning’s Seaside Park, New Jersey pipe bombing, which forced the cancellation of a U.S. Marine race, officers said.
– No indication of NY terror cell –
Another pressure cooker device was found and defused close to the scene of the Manhattan explosion, and a nest of bombs were discovered late Sunday at the train station in Elizabeth, which were also defused.
Bill Sweeney, a senior FBI official, said he was “ruling nothing out” when asked whether the same suspect was behind the bombs planted in Elizabeth.