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A man went on a stabbing rampage at a shopping mall in Sydney, Australia, killing six people and injuring at least 12 others. Among the victims were five women and a man, with one woman dying later in the hospital. The attacker, identified as Joel Cauchi from Queensland, had mental health issues and was not believed to be linked to terrorism. The motives for the attack were unclear, and the victims did not appear to have been targeted.

The violence of the attack shocked Australians, as mass shootings are rare in the country due to strict gun laws. The incident was the worst act of mass violence since 2017, when a driver killed six people in Melbourne. Witnesses described chaos and fear as the attacker stabbed shoppers in the mall. Some hid in backrooms while others ran, passing injured victims on the floor. Parents held onto their children as they tried to escape the danger.

Eyewitnesses recounted the harrowing experience of the attack, with one man initially mistaking the commotion for a celebrity sighting before realizing the danger. A coffee shop owner described leading his staff to safety and witnessing the police officer confronting the attacker. The officer shot the attacker after he lunged towards her with a knife, ultimately fatally injuring him. Footage of the attack captured the terrifying scene as shoppers tried to escape and some attempted to intervene.

Andrew Reid, a lifeguard who was shopping at the mall, used his training to assist victims by applying pressure to wounds and trying to stop bleeding. Despite the efforts of witnesses and emergency responders, some victims suffered serious injuries. Many praised the quick response of the police, with one survivor crediting the officer with saving his life. Prime Minister Anthony Albanese commended the officer for her bravery and quick actions in confronting the attacker.

The attack at Bondi Junction, a popular area for shopping and beachgoers, added to the shock of the incident. The location is known as a safe and bustling area for families and friends, making the violence even more unexpected. The prime minister expressed condolences for the victims and their families, emphasizing that the attack was a horrific act of violence targeting innocent people going about their daily lives. The incident left the community reeling and questioning how such a tragedy could occur in a typically peaceful and secure environment.

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