Incident at UK parliament being treated as terrorism incident, police said – NEWS.com.au
A MAN in his 20s has been arrested on suspicion of terrorist offences, after a car crashed into security barriers outside the UK Parliament today.
Reuters UK confirmed it is being treated as a terrorism incident at this stage, with the Metropolitan’s Counter-Terrorism Command leading the investigation.
The incident occurred at 7.37am London time today (4.37pm AEST) when a silver Ford Fiesta smashed into the Parliament’s barriers, colliding into several cyclists and pedestrians, CNN reported.
Armed officers could then be seen surrounding the car before leading a man, understood to be the driver, away in handcuffs.
Dozens of emergency vehicles have been seen swarming around Parliament Square with members of the public ordered to stay clear of the area, The Sun reports. Armed police remain at the scene.
A number of pedestrians have been injured, but none are believed to be in a life-threatening condition, according to police.
“We have treated two people at the scene for injuries that are not believed to be serious and have taken them to hospital,” London Ambulance said in a Twitter statement.
UK Prime Minister Theresa May says in tweet that her thoughts are with those injured in the incident outside parliament.
Witness Jason Williams told ITV’s Good Morning Britain police were telling him to “get out, get out of the area”.
He described the incident as “very, very scary”, adding that he was feeling “very anxious”.
He said he’d seen a man driving a vehicle, “and he’s gone into one of the bollards.”
Mr Williams recalled a loud bang and immediately thought “Oh no, this is another terrorist attack.”
“So I’ve just started to run and the police were saying ‘get out, get out of the area’.
“It (the car) was behind me. I didn’t see anyone else involved. I just saw this one vehicle, so it seems to be deliberate.
“I was very surprised (the police didn’t go in straight away). They seemed to be standing back. They were obviously a bit wary, like what’s going to happen next?
The Telegraph reported another witness saying “it looked intentional — the car drove at speed and towards the barriers”, while another said he believed the car was travelling at up to 50mph.
BREAKING: a car seems to have crashed into Parliament, lot of police activity here! pic.twitter.com/JMIzzz0ATc
— Vincent McAviney (@VinnyMcAv) August 14, 2018
“I don’t know if it was a tip-off, a warning, that this was a bomb. There seems to be maybe about 200 police here now, and it’s all happened very quickly in the space of half an hour.”
Video footage shows smoke coming from the bonnet of the vehicle and police officers urging people to leave the scene and find alternative routes.
Reuters confirmed that streets around Parliament Square, Millbank and Victoria Tower Gardens have been cordoned off as dozens of armed police have swooped on the scene.
London-based TV journalist Vincent McAviney tweeted vision of the scene, saying there was “lots of police activity”.
Breakfast TV in the UK carried footage of police officers pointing rifles into the silver car after it crashed.
More to come