Forty-two persons were hurt when a man hurled a hand grenade at a crowd watching a tribal dances at New Year's celebrations in Manila's biggest park early Saturday, officials said.

The attacker, whom investigators said they could not identify, escaped in the confusion after throwing a fragmentation-type grenade at about 1 a.m. in Rizal Park, the police said.

At least two of the wounded were reported in serious condition.

New Year's celebrations elsewhere also turned violent. Maria Teresa Afratellanza, 27, was killed by a stray bullet while toasting the new year on the balcony of her home near Naples and at least 352 other people were injured across Italy by holiday merrymakers, according to Italian police.

In London, the police and the Department of Environment began to investigate why two women were trampled to death and perhaps as many as 500 persons injured in Trafalgar Square. An unidentified man in his 20s was also reported to have died of a heart attack there.

Simon Turney, chairman of the Public Services Committee of the Greater London Council, said: "It is obvious that crowd control measures broke down." However, Scotland Yard denied that police were to blame: "As far as we are aware at this stage, what took place at New Year in Trafalgar Square was a terribly unfortunate accident."

In Manila, most of those wounded were standing around a group of Igorot tribal dancers.

"I was at the inner edge of the circle and I had just thrown coins at the dancers when an object, I thought a tin can, landed close and rolled toward us," said Willie Arevalo, a 22 year-old messenger. Wounded in the chest and legs, he said the force of the explosion threw him about 20 feet.

"When I stood up I felt deaf. I saw blood on my clothes and there was blood on my face," he said in an interview at a hospital.