London attack leaves seven people dead

A white van hit several pedestrians on London Bridge. Three men then left the vehicle and stabbed a number of people in Borough Market, south of the bridge.

Seven people have been killed in an 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 just after 22:00 BST.

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 at least 30 people have been taken to hospital.

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.

The British Transport Police said one of its officers was seriously injured after being stabbed as he responded to the incident, but his condition was not said to be life-threatening.

Prime Minister Theresa May described the incidents as “dreadful events” and will chair a meeting of the government’s Cobra emergency committee on Sunday.

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

Eyewitnesses said they saw people getting out of the van after the attack on the bridge and running towards Borough Market.

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 is a fake bomb vest strapped to his body.

The attack comes almost two weeks after 22 people died in a suicide bombing at a concert in Manchester. In March, five people died in London when a car was driven at pedestrians on Westminster Bridge and a police officer was stabbed outside Parliament.

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 and part of Cannon Street.

The Met Police has set up a casualty bureau 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.

 

Zainab Sa’id