One man was arrested for suspicion of terrorism Tuesday after a car slammed into pedestrians near the Houses of Parliament in London, the second incident near the spot in less than 18 months.
Three people were injured. Police said none of the injured suffered life-threatening injuries.
After the attack, police raided properties in Birmingham and Nottingham, The Independent reported.
“Counter-terrorism officers, supported by Nottinghamshire Police, are undertaking a search of a residential property in Nottingham this evening,” a police statement said. “The activity … is in response to this morning’s declared terrorist incident in Westminster.”
President Donald Trump called for a strong response to the incident.
Another terrorist attack in London…These animals are crazy and must be dealt with through toughness and strength!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 14, 2018
Witnesses told Sky News that a silver Ford Fiesta speed crossed lanes and struck a group of cyclists near Parliament Square before hitting a security barrier.
“I think it looked intentional – the car drove at speed and towards the barriers,” witness Ewalina Ochab said. “I was walking on the other side. I heard some noise and someone screamed. I turned around and I saw a silver car driving very fast close to the railings, maybe even on the pavement.”
– A man drove his car into the gates of the Parliament in London earlier today
– Multiple people injured, but none life threatening
– Suspect is in custody
– Police treating it as terror attack
– Suspect is not cooperating with policepic.twitter.com/b8eww2JOtK
— PM Breaking News (@PMBreakingNews) August 14, 2018
“Basically, I’ve seen a man driving a vehicle, and he’s gone into one of the bollards. There was a loud bang. Straight away I thought, ‘Oh no, this is another terrorist attack.’ So I just started to run, and the police were saying, ‘Get out, get out of the area,’” said witness Jason Williams, according to The New York Times.
“Our priority is to formally establish the identity of the suspect and his motivation if we can. He is not currently co-operating,” said Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu. The man’s age was given as 29.
Officials said the man was not known to Britain’s intelligence agencies but The Daily Mail reported that he had interacted with police.
Security Minister Ben Wallace said the driver was a British citizen who “came from another country initially.”
Officials said that video footage showed the car used in the attack at various places from Birmingham to London overnight.
Wallace said British authorities will review security protocols after the incident.
“We will review, see what could have been done. The security we have in place now is built up over experience over years, going back even to the IRA.”
British Prime Minister Theresa May called the incident “shocking.”
“For the second time in as many years, the home of our democracy, which is a potent symbol for our precious values of tolerance and freedom, has witnessed terrible scenes just yards from its doors,” she said in a statement.
In March 2017, an attack along Westminster Bridge left four people dead and 40 injured.
“My thoughts are with the innocent members of the public who were hurt in this appalling incident. I wish them a speedy recovery and we must be thankful that nobody suffered life-threatening injuries,” May said.
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