Australia police: Melbourne attacker so planned ...

SYDNEY (AP) – Australia said it was planned to set off an explosion in a state-inspired terrorist attack in central Melbourne.
The attacker, Hassain Khalif Shire Ali, 30, had his passport canceled in 2015 after it was learned to travel to Syria, police said.
The attack occurred on Friday when Shire Ali got out of a pickup vehicle, which was set on fire, and stabbed three men, one of whom died at the scene. The attack horrified hundreds of onlookers during the afternoon rush hour in Australia's second-biggest city.
Victoria State Police Commissioner Graham Ashton said Shire Ali, who was shot and killed in a hospital, had made "unsophisticated" plans for his exploitation of many more fatalities. He had placed several barbecue gas canisters in the back of his pickup, with the outlet valves open, but they had failed to ignite.
"It looks like he's been attempting to ignite a fire in the car," he said. "Ashton told reporters.
Shire Ali, who moved to Australia with his family from Somalia in the 1990s, was known to the federal intelligence agency ASIO. He had a criminal history for cannabis use, theft and driving open, Ashton said.
A burnt out vehicle is seen on Bourke Street in Melbourne, Friday, Nov. 9, 2018. A knife-wielding man stabbed two people, one fatally, in Australia's second-largest city on Friday in an attack likely linked to terrorism, police said , Melbourne to a standstill (James Ross / AAP Image via AP)
Australian Federal Police Police Commissioner Ian McCartney said: "What did you think the attack was inspired by IS, but it was thought Shire Ali had no direct links to the organization.
"It's fair to say he was inspired. He was radicalized, with the rise of the caliphate and the propaganda that was put out on the internet. We're not saying there was direct contact. We're saying it's more from an inspirational perspective, "McCartney said.
McCartney said the incident was a "reality check" for security agencies that "even with the fall of the (IS) caliphate … the threat continues to be real."
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said "radical, violent, extremist Islam" poses the greatest threat to Australia's national security.
"Here in Australia, we would not call out the fact that the greatest threat of religious extremism in this country is the radical and dangerous ideology of extremist Islam," he said.
Morrison said he had long-standing relationships with the Muslim community.
Shire Ali had family and associates who were also known to police. His brother Ali Khalif Shire Ali is currently on remand awaiting trial next year for allegedly planning an attack, Ashton said.
The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for Friday's attack but provided no evidence. It said that it was part of the international coalition fighting the militants in Syria and Iraq.
Police and civilians had tried unsuccessfully to subdue Shire Ali before he was shot in the chest by a police officer, who Ashton said only graduated from the police academy three months ago.
A man aged 74, who had been stabbed in the face, died at the scene. Two other men, aged 26 and 58, are in a hospital with what they describe as non-life threatening injuries.
Ashton also said police had searched two Melbourne properties on Saturday in relation to the attack, but they did not believe there were any ongoing threats to the public.
It's the second time in four years Australia has witnessed militant violence.
In December 2014, a 17-hour victory in which a gunman took 18 people hostage in a Sydney cafe ended with two dead people and the assailant killed by police. Islamic State flag at the outset of the crisis, there was no evidence he had established contact with the militant group. However, at a later inquest, the coroner of New South Wales said the gunman's actions fell "within the accepted definition of terrorism."
Melbourne So what the scene of two fatal car-ramming incidents last year, but nothing linked by police to terrorism.
Ashton says there is no suggestion of Shire Ali was inspired by James "Dimitrious" Gargasoulas, who faced this week on six charges of murder over the first ramming attack, in January 2017.
Melbourne, Australia, Friday, Nov. 9, 2018. Police shot a knife-wielding man Friday after he fatally stabbed one person and injured two others in the center of Australia's second- largest city, police said. (Australian Broadcasting Corporation via AP)
Melbourne, Australia, Friday, Nov. 9, 2018. Police shot a knife-wielding man Friday after he fatally stabbed one person and injured two others at the center of Australia's second-largest city, police said. (Australian Broadcasting Corporation via AP)
Melbourne, Australia, Friday, Nov. 9, 2018. Police shot a knife-wielding man Friday after he fatally stabbed one person and injured two others in the center of Australia's second -largest city, police said. (Australian Broadcasting Corporation via AP)
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