A man was killed and seven people injured in late-night stabbings in a busy nightlife area of the central England city of Birmingham, police said Sunday.
The Snow Hill area was cordoned off with police tape on Sunday morning as forensic teams worked.
Police said they were searching for a lone suspect in what appeared to be random attacks.
Chief Supt. Steve Graham of West Midlands Police detectives said police were still investigating the motive but said “there is absolutely no suggestion at all that this is terror-related.”
West Midlands Police said officers were called to reports of a stabbing in the city centre shortly after midnight on Sunday. That was soon followed by reports of other stabbings in the area over a period of about two hours.
Graham said two of the seven injured people, a man and a woman, were in critical condition in hospitals. Five others received “relatively minor” injuries.
The site of one attack is in the city’s Gay Village, but Graham said there was no suggestion the crime was “motivated by hate.”
Cara Curran, a club promoter at the Arcadian Centre, near the scene of the violence, said she saw multiple people fighting in the street in and around the venue.
“It was one group of boys against another group of boys,” she told the BBC, adding that “racial slurs” were being thrown.
Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab described the violence as “a very serious incident.”
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families,” he said.
He said he had no information suggesting the stabbings were related to terrorism.
West Midlands Mayor Andy Street urged people not to speculate and to “remain calm but vigilant.”