Two Danish journalists who have worked for National Geographic were stabbed in Gabon on Saturday, in an attack that left one in critical condition, according to media reports.
The stabbing occurred in the nation’s capital, Libreville, according to the Associated Press, which reported that the attacker was immediately arrested.
The attacker told police he was acting "in retaliation for the attacks of the United States against the Muslims and the American recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel," said Gabon’s Minister of Defense, Etienne Massard Kabinda Makaga, according to media reports.
U.S. President Donald Trump recently announced a plan to relocate the American embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, a highly controversial move.
Gabon’s defense minister said the attacker is a 53-year-old Niger national who has lived in Gabon for 19 years.
National Geographic is withholding the names of the journalists out of concern for their safety.
"We are deeply saddened to confirm the reports that the two Danish nationals horrifically attacked in Gabon are members of the National Geographic family," National Geographic said in a statement. "We are in direct contact with the victims and the Danish production company with whom they were on assignment, and our main objective is to support their recovery and safe return to Denmark."
National Geographic journalists and grantees have long been active in Gabon, a West African nation well known for the diverse wildlife that inhabit its rain forests and coastal waters. Journalists have not historically been targets of violence in Gabon, which has a religiously diverse society with a Muslim minority.
LEAD IMAGE: olice officers arrive at an artisanal market on December 17, 2017, in Libreville, Gabon. Two Danish journalists were wounded in a knife attack in the city on Saturday.
Photograph by Steve Jordan, AFP/Getty