Batley and Spen MP Jo Cox has been shot in Birstall near Leeds, an eyewitness has said.
- West Yorkshire MP was meeting locals when fight broke out in the street
- One of the men wrestled with the politician before she was shot twice
- The mother of two is now in a ‘critical’ condition in hospital
- A man was arrested at the scene after armed police flooded the area
A female Labour MP has been shot twice and stabbed after she stepped in when two men were fighting in the street.
Jo Cox, MP for Batley and Spen, was speaking to locals in Birstall near Leeds when the scuffle broke out. She is now in a critical condition in hospital.
An eyewitness said: ‘He was fighting with her and wrestling with her and then the gun went off twice and then she fell between two cars and I came and saw her bleeding on the floor.’
The shocking incident took place near the town’s library where the 41-year-old politician held advice surgeries.
Those who saw the shocking incident said the mother-of-two was left ‘bleeding on the pavement’.
She was airlifted to Leeds General hospital where she is now said to be in a ‘serious condition’.
Hichem Ben-Abdallah, the owner of a nearby restaurant, said he saw a ‘river of people’ come screaming down the road after the attack.
He told The Yorkshire Post: ‘A lady was down on the floor. The man pulled a gun – it was a makeshift gun, not like something you see on television.
‘After the second shot I turned and ran. He walked away very calmly, down the steps. Nobody stopped him – he had a gun.’
Daniel Blyth, 38, a company director from Birstall, told the paper he saw seven police cars ‘racing up’ the road to the scene.
A police spokesman said: ‘At 12.53 today, police were called to a report of an incident on Market Street, Birstall, where a woman in her 40s had suffered serious injuries and is in a critical condition.
‘A man in his late 40s to early 50s nearby also suffered slight injuries.
The spokesman continued: ‘Armed officers attended and a 52-year-old man was arrested in the area. There are no further details at present. Police presence in the area has been increased as a reassurance to the community.’
Prime Minister David Cameron tweeted: ‘Very concerned about reports Jo Cox has been injured. Our thoughts and prayers are with Jo and her family.’
Cambridge graduate Ms Cox was elected to the seat of Batley and Spen at the last general election in 2015.
She is national chair of Labour Women’s Network, has worked for Save the Children and the NSPCC.
She is the mother of two young children and is said to enjoy mountain-climbing, boating and running.
Fellow MPs today sent their best wishes to their colleague as she remained in hospital.
Yvette Cooperwrote: ‘Terrible, terrible news. Thoughts and prayers with good friend Jo & with her family.’
Boris Johnson added: ‘Just heard the absolutely horrific news about the attack on Jo Cox MP. My thoughts are with Jo and her family.’
And Sadiq Khan tweeted: ‘Shocked to hear terrible news about brilliant MP and friend Jo Cox. Thinking of her and praying for her and family.’
A Labour spokesperson said: ‘We’re aware of the incident that happened this afternoon. All our thoughts are with Jo Cox and her family. We cannot give any further updates at this time.’
The of mother of two was elected to the seat of Batley and Spen at the last general election in 2015