A police officer has been knifed three times by a group of teenagers while on an undercover operation in Bow.
The assault happened at approximately 9.30pm on Tuesday evening in an alleyway near Bow Bells Pub on Bow Road in Tower Hamlets.
A Scotland Yard spokesman said: “At this early stage, it is not believed that the youths, all in their late teens, knew that the person they attacked was a police officer, and that they may have been out socialising in the area prior to the attack.”
A 17-year-old boy was arrested later that evening in the area on suspicion of attempted murder.
The officer, who was in plain clothes at the time of the attack, was rescued by London Air Ambulance and London Ambulance Service, and taken to an East London hospital. He suffered three stab wounds and remains in a non-life threatening condition.
The injured man, in his 40s, is attached to the Met’s specialist crime and operations unit and was deployed at Bow Road on a pre-planned operation.
Richard Martin, temporary Deputy Assistant Commissioner, said: “Fortunately, the officer is recovering well in hospital, as his injuries could have been a lot worse.”
The Metropolitan Police say the group may have been involved in another incident outside Devons Road DLR Station, close to the attack on the officer. A motorist was threatened with a knife and subsequently reported the incident to the police.
A knife was recovered from the scene. The Met said the stabbing was not being treated as terrorist-related.
The attack came after two other officers were attacked by a mob of around 30 schoolchildren in New Cross two weeks ago, although there is not thought to be a link between the two attacks.