London attack: Six killed in vehicle and stabbing incidents


The white van, in the centre of this photo, is believed to have been used in the attack on London BridgeImage copyright
H. Attai

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The white van, in the centre of this photo, is believed to have been used in the attack on London Bridge

Six people have been killed in a terror attack in central London in which three assailants were shot dead by police, Scotland Yard has said.

A white van hit several pedestrians on London Bridge at about 22:00 BST before apparently crashing into railings.

Three men then left the vehicle and stabbed a number of people in Borough Market, south of the bridge, an area known for its restaurants and bars.

Armed officers confronted and shot the suspects within eight minutes.

London Ambulance Service said 48 people have been taken to five hospitals. More than 80 medics were sent to the scene to help those hurt.

One of the injured is an officer from British Transport Police who was stabbed after responding to the incident. His condition is serious, but not life-threatening.

Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley said: “The suspects were wearing what looked like explosive vests but these were later established to be hoaxes.”

He said it was currently believed there were only three attackers involved.

“We are treating this as a terrorist incident and a full investigation is already under way,” he added.

The incident is the third terror attack in the UK in three months following the car and knife attack in Westminster in March, which left five people dead, and the Manchester bombing less than two weeks ago, in which 22 people were killed.

Prime Minister Theresa May described Saturday night’s as “dreadful” and will chair a meeting of the government’s Cobra emergency committee later.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan called it “a deliberate and cowardly attack on innocent Londoners”.

‘Very aggressive’

BBC reporter Holly Jones, who was on the bridge at the time of the attack, said the van was “probably travelling at about 50 miles an hour”.

“He swerved right round me and then hit about five or six people. He hit about two people in front of me and then three behind,” Ms Jones told the BBC News Channel.

Another eyewitness, Robbie, was sitting in a taxi opposite the Barrowboy and Banker pub on London Bridge.

“I saw about 20 or 30 people rushing to get back into the pub and five seconds later a big white van came screeching down the pavement,” he told BBC Radio 5 live.

“Two or three people jumped out. Initially, I thought it was a road traffic incident and the people had jumped out to see if anyone was injured, but I could tell immediately, they looked very aggressive.”

His friend Josh was coming out of the pub a few seconds later and saw people running up to the bridge from Borough Market.

“A chap ran up and I heard him shout, ‘He’s got a knife, he’s stabbing people.'”

A security guard who oversees a number of pubs in the London Bridge area told the BBC he saw four people stabbed by three attackers.

Gunshots were later heard in the area while one social media user posted a photograph appearing to show one of the attackers lying on the ground outside a pub in the food market, with what police now say was a fake bomb vest strapped to his body.

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Gabriele Sciotto

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Media caption“Get down” – police enter bar at London Bridge

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Media captionBBC reporter Holly Jones saw the incident

Eye witness Will Orton described being in a pub in the area and seeing people coming running inside.

“We didn’t really know what was going on,” he said.

“We thought maybe there was a fight or something outside. And then there were almost hundreds of people coming inside.

“The bouncers did a really good job, they shut the doors and locked everyone in. There was panic – it seemed like it was literally outside the door. People were coming inside and saying they had witnessed people being stabbed.”

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PA

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People running down Borough High Street on the south side of London Bridge

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PA

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Armed police were sent to the area

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Getty Images

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Counter-terrorism specialist firearm officers were later in attendance

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Getty Images

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Ambulances attended to the injured on London Bridge

On Twitter, Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn described the incidents as “brutal and shocking”.

Transport for London (TfL) said London Bridge had been closed in both directions, while neighbouring Southwark Bridge has also been shut.

TfL said there were further closures in Borough High Street, while on the north side of the river, road closures included Lower Thames Street.

The Met Police has set up a casualty bureau on 0800 096 1233 and 020 7158 0197 for people concerned about friends or relatives who may be affected.

Facebook has activated its safety check so people in London could post a message to let friends and relatives know they were safe.

The police are asking anyone with photographs or videos of the incident to upload them here.

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Getty Images

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Police led people to safety after the attack

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Police and ambulance could be seen on the south side of London Bridge


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