Seven people have been killed and a further 48 injured in a terrifying attack at London Bridge and Borough Market. The terror attack occurred at 10.08pm on Saturday night as people were enjoying a night out in the capital city. Three attackers drove a white van into a crowd of people on a pavement at London Bridge, before going on a stabbing frenzy in nearby streets. Within minutes the police had responded and all three men were shot dead at 10.16pm. Members of the public are said to have thrown bottles and chairs in an attempt to stop the attackers. Those injured have been taken to five nearby hospitals for treatment. It is just 12 days since the Manchester Arena explosion killed 22 people and injured over 100.
Counter-terrorism special forces in London Bridge on Saturday night
Metrolpolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley has said: “We are treating this as a terrorist incident and a full investigation is already under way, led by the Met’s counter-terrorism command. At 22:08 yesterday evening we began to receive reports that a vehicle had struck pedestrians on London Bridge. The vehicle continued to drive from London Bridge to Borough Market. Armed officers responded very quickly and bravely, confronting three male suspects who were shot and killed in Borough Market. The suspects had been confronted and shot by the police within eight minutes of the first call. The suspects were wearing what looked like explosive vests but these were later established to be hoaxes.”
People are sharing #PrayForLondon on social media in solidarity against the attack
London Mayor Sadiq Khan released the following statement: “My thoughts are with everyone affected, and I'd like to thank the brave men and women of our emergency services who were first on the scene and will be working throughout the night.” He said he will be attending the government’s emergency Cobra meeting this morning along with Prime Minister Theresa May.
He continued: “London Bridge Station is closed and we are asking people to avoid the area. The situation is still unfolding and I would ask all Londoners and visitors to our city to remain calm and vigilant. Please report anything suspicious to the police, but only call 999 in an emergency. We don't yet know the full details, but this was a deliberate and cowardly attack on innocent Londoners and visitors to our city enjoying their Saturday night. I condemn it in the strongest possible terms. There is no justification whatsoever for such barbaric acts.”
BBC reporter Holly Jones, was on London Bridge during the attack and told the news channel that the van was going about 50 miles an hour. She said: "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.” Another witness, Thomas Daly, was in the Wheatsheaf pub and told The Guardian: “People were saying there had been a stabbing at Borough Market and they locked us in. We sat down again and some minutes later people started coming into the bar and people were getting hysterical. A lot of people were streaming through the rear exit and we went outside and heard gunshots.” Thomas said that at that point people tried to get back inside.
The Metropolitan Police has set up an emergency phone line on 0800 096 1233 and 020 7158 0197 for those concerned about family or friends who may have been in the area at the time of the attack.