Dutch police (stock)
Dutch police (stock)iStock

A driver repeatedly rammed a van into a police car at around half past four this morning in downtown Amsterdam in the Netherlands, and then drove into two police motorcycles that had been parked to form a roadblock, according to a report in the Associated Press.

The van burst into flames, and its driver was subdued by police using pepper spray before being arrested.

Two police officers and the suspect were treated for injuries sustained during the incident.

Police have yet to suggest a motive for the attack.

Amsterdam has frequently been the setting for terrrorist attacks, perhaps most notably in 2004 when filmmaker Theo van Gogh was shot and stabbed to death on the street by Muslim Mohammed Bouyeri. Bouyeri was "taking revenge" for a film van Gogh directed, "Submission," which was critical of the treatment of women in Islam. Bouyeri was arrested and sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole.

In 2019, Gokmen Tanis, a Turkish-born immigrant and known Islamic extremist, committed a shooting attack on a Dutch tram, killing four and wounding six. He too was sentenced to life in prison.

Amsterdam, with a population of around 800,000, is home to an estimated 140,000 Muslims.