Saturday 21 April 2018

Everything we know so far as death toll in London attack rises

Rescue personnel assemble after an incident near London Bridge in London, Britain June 4, 2017. REUTERS/Hannah Mckay
Rescue personnel assemble after an incident near London Bridge in London, Britain June 4, 2017. REUTERS/Hannah Mckay
Police officers on Borough High Street as police are dealing with a "major incident" at London Bridge. Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire
A police boat passes under London Bridge by HMS Belfast as police have confirmed that incidents at London Bridge and Borough Market are "terrorist incidents", following reports of a vehicle ploughing into pedestrians on a bridge and stabbings. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday June 3, 2017. See PA story POLICE Bridge. Photo credit should read: Yui Mok/PA Wire
People with their hands on their heads about 10 minutes after midnight as they leave from inside a police cordon after an attack in London, Sunday, June 4, 2017. Armed British police rushed to London Bridge late Saturday after reports of a vehicle running down pedestrians and people being stabbed nearby. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

Here is what we know following the incident at London Bridge.

What happened?

At least seven people died and 48 were injured in a protracted terror attack in central London which began on London Bridge shortly after 10pm on Saturday night. Three attackers drove a van into pedestrians before getting out and stabbing people on nearby streets.

The attackers moved to Borough Market and several eye-witnesses reported the trio randomly attacking people.

People flee as police attend to an incident near London Bridge in London, Britain, June 4, 2017. REUTERS/Hannah McKay
People flee as police attend to an incident near London Bridge in London, Britain, June 4, 2017. REUTERS/Hannah McKay

Police shot the suspects within eight minutes of the first emergency call Scotland Yard said early on Sunday morning.

The attackers were wearing false explosive vests when they carried out the attack.

A transport police officer was "seriously injured" during the attack.

A third incident - a stabbing in the Vauxhaul area - was initially believed to be connected but it quickly emerged that it was not related.

Timeline:

:: 10.07pm - Ambulance services were called to reports of a vehicle ploughing through pedestrians on London Bridge, arriving within six minutes.

:: 10.08pm - Police were also called to the scene.

:: Officers then attended a second incident at nearby Borough Market after reports of stabbings.

:: Within eight minutes, three male suspects were shot dead in Borough Market by police marksman.

:: The men were wearing what looked like explosive vests but these were later found to be hoaxes.

:: At least 48 patients were taken to five hospitals, London Ambulance Service said, with more than 80 medics having been sent to the scene.

:: 12.25am on Sunday - Both incidents were declared by the Metropolitan Police as terror attacks.

:: Shortly before 4am - Police confirm six people were killed in the rampage.

:: A third incident at Vauxhall was a stabbing and unrelated, Scotland Yard said.

Is the incident over?

By the early hours of Sunday morning the incident appeared to have been brought under control by authorities in London.

When pressed by reporters as to whether the incident was over Scotland Yard said that police believed there was three attackers and do not think there are any more. However, he added, enquiries are ongoing.

Who is behind the attack?

Nobody has claimed responsibility for the attack, which is being treated as a terror incident.

Reuters News agency reported that the so-called Islamic State used an instant messaging service, Telegram urging its followers to launch attacks with trucks, knives and guns against "Crusaders" during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

What are the authorities saying?

Mark Rowley, Britain's top anti-terrorism officer, said a comprehensive terror investigation is underway. A meeting of the Government's Cobra emergency committee will be held on Sunday.

Police chiefs also pledged that Londoners will see an increased police presence in the city in the coming days and said the policing plan for the city will be reviewed.

Investigating officers have been keen to stress that their knowledge on the incident is "still growing". With two separate crime scenes to process and dozens of witnesses it is likely the investigation will take some time.

What do we know about the victims?

No information has yet emerged about the people killed or injured in the attack, save for the single officer who was injured.

A dedicated helpline has been set up for anyone who is worried about a relative or a friend in the wake of the attack.

The Casualty Bureau is now open on 0800 096 1233 & 020 7158 0197.

The Irish Embassy in London is also monitoring the situation. The Department of Foreign Affairs can be reached on 01 408 2000 for those concerned about loved-ones in London.

Any arrests?

Police raided a property in Barking, east London in the early hours of Sunday morning. Sky News reported that the flat is the home of one of the three attackers. Police confirmed shortly after 1pm on Sunday that they had arrested 12 people in relation to the incident.

What next?

UK Prime Minister Theresa May has called an emergency COBRA meeting today. It comes just two weeks after an emergency meeting held after the Manchester Arena attacks at an Adriana Grande pop concert.

Conservatives have suspended their national campaigning for the General Election in the wake of the London Bridge terror attack.

A senior party spokesman said national events were being suspended on Sunday and a decision on further campaigning would be taken later in the day.

It is the second time the campaign for the June 8 poll has been interrupted by atrocities, following a three day pause after the suicide bomb attack in Manchester.

The Tory spokesman said: "The Conservative party will not be campaigning nationally today. We will review as the day goes on and as more details of the attack emerge."

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