Westminster in Lockdown – Shots fired and police officer stabbed

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By Sam Gosling

The Palace of Westminster is currently in lockdown as gunshots have been fired in the grounds. Parliament has been suspended this afternoon as a major incident is currently happening in the streets outside the Palace where MPs were in session. Gunshots have been heard outside the Parliament building and one man is currently in custody.

Witness Kevin Schofield told Sky News, “A man with a knife rushed a security gate and attacked a police officer and was taken down by armed police…I heard a bang and saw the man rush the gate and hold what looked like a knife out towards a police officer and I saw the officer fall.” Two people are currently being treated by paramedics at the scene. One is thought to be the police officer attacked and the other the attacker.

Confirmed reports say that armed police shot the attacker. Another connected incident is reported to have happened on Westminster bridge involving a car; several people are thought to have been hurt and witnesses say that there was an almighty crash and bodies are lying on the road. Multiple people were struck by a vehicle on the bridge and are seriously injured. Reuters are reporting that two people were shot and at least a dozen people have been injured by the car. The Prime Minister is currently in Parliament but is said to be safe and being kept up to date with what is happening outside.

We spoke to Stalybridge and Hyde MP Jonathan Reynolds who commented:

‘It was immediately clear this was a very serious incident. Everyone who works in Westminster has prepared for this day but we hoped it would never come. The response from the emergency services was heroic’

Members of the house are undoubtedly worried as it is less than a year since the murder of Labour MP Jo Cox who was gunned down in her constituency of Batley and Spen in June last year. The MP was holding a surgery at her constituency office when Thomas Mair gunned her down. He is currently serving a life sentence for the murder.

This afternoon’s incident is currently being treated as a terror attack.

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