File picture: Pixabay

London - Three people were injured late Monday after a man armed with a knife attacked them at a railway station in the English city of Manchester.

Police confirmed that a man and a woman were taken to hospital with "knife injuries" after the attack, which took place just before 9 pm (2100 GMT) at Manchester Victoria station, to the north of the city centre.

A police officer was treated for a stab wound to the shoulder, police said, adding that a man had been detained.

The officer was released soon afterwards. His injuries were not life-threatening.

The stabbing has been declared a "critical incident" by police. Whether or not the incident is terror-related has not been confirmed. Counter-Terrorism Policing North West are leading the investigation, the Manchester Evening News newspaper reported.

BBC radio producer Sam Clack, who was at the station when the attack took place, tweeted: "Just been very close to the most terrifying thing. Man stabbed in Manchester Victoria station on tram platform.

"Feet from me, I was close to jumping on the tracks as attacker had a long kitchen knife. Totally shaken. This is seriously messed up."

He was quoted by British media as saying that the suspect shouted "Allah" as he attacked.

"I just heard this most blood-curdling scream and looked down the platform," Clack said. "What it looked like was a guy in his 60s with a woman of similar age and another guy all dressed in black.

"It looked like they were having a fight but she was screaming in this blood-curdling way.

"I saw police in high-viz come towards him. He came towards me. I looked down and saw he had a kitchen knife with a black handle with a good, 12-inch blade."

Police officers tasered the man and used pepper spray on him before six or seven officers jumped on him, he added.

As the suspect was held down he said "As long as you keep bombing other countries this sort of shit is going to keep happening," according to Clack.

The Manchester Evening News reported that the station had been closed and posted pictures of a large police presence at the station.

dpa