At press time, four people had been confirmed dead, a police officer had been stabbed and as many as 40 people had been run over outside London’s Parliament building as it was in session on Wednesday. The incident was being treated as a terror attack. London’s metropolitan police were called to the Parliament building at around 2:40 p.m. local time (10:40 a.m. EST) after reports of a vehicle crashing into a crowd at Westminster Bridge near Britain’s Parliament, resulting in horrific injuries. At least 10 people were treated at the scene. A woman was pulled alive from the Thames River where she had jumped or been thrown as the car hit the bridge railing. Witnesses say an assailant also forced his way onto the grounds of Westminster Palace and stabbed a police officer before he was shot at least three times, but was taken from the scene via ambulance, presumably alive.
“Prayers of the Jewish community are with the families of the victims of today’s attack at #Westminster & with our brave security services,” wrote British Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis on Twitter.
“A car on Westminster Bridge has just mowed down at least 5 people,” Poland’s former foreign minister, Radek Sikorski, wrote on Twitter. Also on the scene was MP Tobias Ellwood, who lost his brother Jon in the Bali bombings in 2002. Ellwood was photographed administering CPR to the injured police officer. The rest of the Parliament was on lockdown and the members were not immediately allowed to leave the building.
The incident Wednesday came on the one-year anniversary of the terror attacks in Brussels in which 32 people were killed and more than 300 injured. ISIS claimed responsibility for those coordinated suicide bombings—two at the Brussels Airport in Zaventem and one at Maalbeek metro station in central Brussels. The bombings were the deadliest terror attack in Belgium’s history. This attack, if confirmed as terror, would be London’s only terror attack since the London transport system’s suicide bombing attacks on July 7, 2005, where 52 people were killed and over 700 were wounded.
Britain is on its second-highest alert level of “severe,” meaning an attack by terrorists is considered highly likely.
By JLNJ Staff