Man shot after knife attack in Melbourne - reports

A man has been shot by police after a knife attack in Melbourne.

Two people are being treated for stab wounds and a third person has died, Melbourne Police say. 

Footage of the scene shows the man approached officers with the knife. Police tried to disarm him but couldn't and the suspect was shot in the chest. 

Superintendent David Clayton of the Melbourne Police said there were no known links to terrorism. 

In a short press conference at 8.15pm NZ time he said: "The investigation is ongoing, we are keeping an open mind."

"There are no known links to terrorism at this stage."

Mr Clayton said police responded quickly to the incident, which was originally reported as a car on fire. 

"As they got out of the car they were confronted by a male brandishing a knife and threatening them. At the same time, passersby were calling out that members of the public had been stabbed.

"Police shot the male in the chest and he is now in a critical condition under guard in hospital."

Police initially responded to a report of a car on fire near the corner of Swanston Street about 4.20pm local time.

The exact circumstances are yet to be determined at this stage. The area has been cordoned off and the public are urged to avoid the area.

The Melbourne Age reports the man stopped his car on Bourke Street, not far from the Target store, and set it alight.

It is believed he then stabbed three people, before he was shot by police.

Counter-terrorism police have been notified, and they are investigating, although there is no immediate indication the incident is terror related.

Ambulance Victoria said in a statement three people are injured, one in a confirmed critical condition.

The statement said one person has been taken to hospital with a neck injury. They are in a suspected critical condition. 

A second person has been taken to hospital with a head injury. Condition not yet known.

A third person has also been taken to hospital. Condition and injuries are not yet known.

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