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Trump pushes immigration fix in wake of NY 'terror-related' subway explosion

The New York Police Department has one person in custody in relation to an explosive device detonating Monday morning. (Source: FDNY/Twitter) The New York Police Department has one person in custody in relation to an explosive device detonating Monday morning. (Source: FDNY/Twitter)
Akayed Ullah. (NY Taxi Commission/CNN) Akayed Ullah. (NY Taxi Commission/CNN)

(RNN) - A suspect is in custody following an attempted terrorist attack in the subway station under the Port Authority Bus Terminal in midtown Manhattan on Monday.

Four people were injured, including the suspect, 27-year-old Akayed Ullah, according to the New York Fire Department. All injuries are non-life-threatening. 

NYPD police commissioner James O'Neill called it a "terror-related incident." He said Ullah intentionally detonated a "low-tech improvised explosive device." Ullah was taken into custody and was moved to Bellevue Hospital with non-life-threatening wounds and burns.

The Associated Press reported the suspect was inspired by the Islamic State group, also known as ISIS, but had no direct contact, based on sources in law enforcement. He told investigators that actions by Israel in Gaza motivated his attack, per CNN.  The Associated Press said the suspect was a Bangladeshi immigrant who had viewed ISIS propaganda online and sought to retaliate against Americans in response to U.S. foreign policy.  

The incident was captured on the subway's surveillance system.

President Donald Trump said the incident highlighted the need to make changes to the nation's immigration system. 

"Today’s terror suspect entered our country through extended-family chain migration, which is incompatible with national security," the president said in a statement.  "My Executive action to restrict the entry of certain nationals from eight countries, which the Supreme Court recently allowed to take effect, is just one step forward in securing our immigration system. Congress must end chain migration." 

When asked about the suspect's connections to any terrorist groups, O'Neill said, "he did make statements, but we're not going to talk about that right now."

Fire commissioner Daniel Nigro said three other people suffered minor injuries consistent with being in the area of the explosion, such as ringing in their ears and headaches. All three took themselves to receive medical treatment.

New York City mayor Bill DeBlasio said the city was fortunate the incident was not worse.

"Our lives revolve around the subway," DeBlasio said. "Thank God the suspect did not achieve his goals."

The device exploded in an underground passageway around 42nd Street and 8th Avenue in Manhattan, near the Port Authority subway station and bus terminal, according to the NYPD. The incident is about a block away from the New York Times building and near Times Square. 

John Miller, NYPD deputy commissioner of intelligence and counterterrorism said device was based on a pipe bomb and tied to him with Velcro and zip ties

Authorities evacuated the A, C and E subway line, and there is a heavy police and emergency responder presence. Police are searching for possible additional devices, which is standard operating procedure.

President Donald Trump has been briefed on the situation.

Witnesses on the scene said they heard two explosions and said there was an orderly evacuation.

"As I was making my way towards outside I kept getting shoved by cops ... cops at every entrance blocking ... police and swat everywhere," witness Francisco Ramirez told a CNN correspondent. "It was scary. It was just a lot of chaos but I didn’t see any injuries."

Copyright 2017 Raycom News Network. All rights reserved.

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