Suspected New York bomber arrested after firefight

Authorities have not yet found any ties that connect Ahmad Rahami to militant groups operating in the Middle East

Law enforcement officers secure the area where they arrested Ahmad Khan Rahami, who is allegedly wanted in connection with bomb attacks in New York and New Jersey (AFP)
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Last update: 
Monday 19 September 2016 21:07 UTC

Police arrested suspected Chelsea bomber after a firefight in Linden, New Jersey on Monday, an official said.

Footage aired on ABC showed 28-year-old Afghan-born American Ahmad Khan Rahami being stretchered into an ambulance, sporting a bloodied bandage on his right arm and moving his head from side to side with his eyes open. 

Two Linden police officers were also shot and hurt in the exchange, said the mayor of the suspect's neighbouring hometown Elizabeth.

Rahami is wanted in connection with Saturday's bombings in New York's Chelsea, which wounded 29 people, and a pipe-bomb attack on the Jersey shore, which caused no injuries but forced the cancellation of a US Marine Corps race.

His reported arrest came around four hours after the FBI released a mugshot of the brown-haired and bearded Rahami, calling him "armed and dangerous" in text message alerts sent to millions of people in the New York area.

FBI officers also found and defused overnight a nest of bombs planted at the train station in Elizabeth, New Jersey.

Authorities have not found any links connecting the suspected bomber with the Islamic State (IS) group or other militant groups operating in the Middle East.

President Barack Obama on Monday called on Americans "not to succumb to fear" after bomb attacks in New York and New Jersey, and a mass stabbing incident in Minnesota over the weekend.

"Even as we have to be vigilant and aggressive both in preventing senseless acts of violence but also making sure that we find those who carry out such acts and bring them to justice, we all have a role to play as citizens in making sure that we don't succumb to that fear," he said.

Obama stressed that investigators at this point saw "no connection" between the incidents on the East Coast and the Minnesota stabbing.

He said that the resilience of local residents showed that "neither individuals nor organisations like ISIL [Islamic State] can ultimately undermine our way of life".

Presidential Republican hopeful, Donald Trump, however, said that the US must start racially profiling people to avoid future attacks. 

“You know, our police are amazing,” he told Fox News earlier on Monday. “Our local police, they know who a lot of these people are. They’re afraid to do anything about it because they don’t want to be accused of profiling.”

He went on to cite Israel as an example to follow, saying the country was doing an "unbelievable job".