A TEEN girl collapsed with a knife lodged in her back in a brutal double stabbing that left her pal seriously injured, horrified witnesses say.

The girls, aged 16 and 17, were knifed in the broad daylight horror outside a takeaway in West Norwood, South East London yesterday.

Both girls stumbled to a bus stop before collapsing – with the younger said to have a blade lodged in her back still.

She remains in a serious but stable condition in hospital, while the 17-year-old's injuries do not appear to be life-threatening.

Four boys – all aged between 16 and 17 – have been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder and remain in custody.

The victims and suspects are all known to each other, police confirmed.

A member of staff at Maeme’s, just a few yards from where the teenage girls were attacked said: “I could see the girls from the shop, they had ran from behind the shop.

“One of the girls, she still had the knife in her, it was just a small one.

“There were a lot of people already helping the girls, they were crying, and looked in pain, but I just hope they are okay."

Cemal Altunton who works in Efes restaurant, where the girls were helped by members of the public, added: "The girls had been stabbed after a fight at the back, behind the shop, that’s what I had been told.

“Then I heard these people at the bus stop, one of them was on the floor, there wasn’t a lot of blood."

Hero bystanders rushed to help the girls in the bus stop before they were both taken to hospital.

An air ambulance also landed on the roof of a nearby B&Q after cops were called to West Norwood Road just after 4.40pm.

It was initially feared that one of the victims was critically ill with life-threatening injuries.

But police later confirmed: "The younger victim's condition has now been assessed as serious but stable.

"The second victim's injuries do not appear to be life-threatening."

Detective Sergeant Rob Merrett of the Met Police's Central South Command Unit said: "This is a shocking incident involving two young female victims, one of whom remains seriously ill in hospital.

"It has understandably caused considerable alarm in the community.

“Officers responded immediately when the 999 call was received.

"Two boys were quickly apprehended near the scene, and urgent enquiries led to two other males being arrested later on at addresses in Lambeth.

“All four are now in custody and my team are conducting a thorough investigation to establish what has led to this unacceptable violence.

"I urge anyone who has information, pictures and video that could assist us to make contact immediately.

"It is imperative that we work with the community to fully establish what has happened here and bring any offenders to justice."

Anyone with information on the shocking incident is asked to call police via 101 quoting reference Cad 4970/25Apr.

To remain anonymous, contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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