British Labour MP Jo Cox has died after being shot and stabbed in her constituency in northern England on Thursday afternoon (Friday morning, NZ Time).
Cox was attacked on Market Street in Birstall, near Leeds, about 12.50pm as she prepared to hold a meeting with constituents.
A 77-year-old man was also attacked, but his injuries were not life-threatening.
Cox, a 41-year-old mother of two, was rushed to hospital in a critical condition, but was pronounced dead at 1.48pm, police said.
Police arrested a 52-year-old man nearby, and recovered weapons, including a firearm.
British media have named the man arrested in connection with the attack as Thomas Mair.
The Telegraph reported Mair lived on a council estate in Bridsall.
A neighbour told the UK paper Mair was a “quiet bloke who keeps to himself”.
Her family, friends and colleagues will be devastated.
The motive for the attack was not yet known.
A large number of police remained near the scene of the attack, and were speaking to many witnesses, Temporary Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police Dee Collins said.
At least one witness heard the suspect shout “Britain First” – the name of a right-wing, anti-immigrant group – before the shooting and during the arrest, Sky News and the Guardian reported.
Cox had been campaigning for Britain to remain in the European Union, but it was not immediately clear whether the attack was related.
Britain First denied any link to the shooting on their website, saying “Britain First obviously is NOT involved and would never encourage behaviour of this sort”.
Too early to know whether the attack was politically motivated, or the assailant was just mad – or both. But for now, a husband has lost his wife, and two children their mother.