Chief Supt Kenny Macdonald: We’re preparing to tackle terrorists

Chief Superintendent Kenny Macdonald is Divisional Commander for Edinburgh. Picture: Ian Georgeson
Chief Superintendent Kenny Macdonald is Divisional Commander for Edinburgh. Picture: Ian Georgeson
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this week Police Scotland has been participating in the UK-wide Counter Terrorism Awareness Week.

This allows us the opportunity to demonstrate to the public the various resources and capabilities at our disposal to investigate and respond to any terror-related incident, in the event that one should occur.

More importantly, however, Counter Terrorism Awareness Week is aimed at providing communities and businesses with all the necessary information, advice and guidance they require to look out for suspicious activity and people; report concerns to police and keep themselves safe.

During this week, specially trained Counter Terrorism officers are carrying out various engagement activities within Edinburgh, including handing out flyers and offering training to licensed and retail premises on various security matters.

Edinburgh is one of the most iconic cities in the world with hundreds of thousands of holidaymakers joining local residents in the Capital each year and it is absolutely essential that we work closely with our relevant partners to do all we can to protect those who live, work and visit here.

The results of the Your View Counts survey showed that Counter Terrorism was the number one priority for communities across Scotland and this feedback has been vital in shaping our plans and strategy for Counter Terrorism Awareness Week.

As you’re all undoubtedly aware, the current UK Threat Level sits at Severe – meaning an attack is likely. This was briefly raised to Critical following the attack in Manchester. Edinburgh, like the rest of the world continues to offer its deepest sympathies to the families and friends affected by this atrocity, as well as those affected by the incidents in London.

However, I would like to reassure our communities here that there is currently no intelligence to suggest an impending attack in Edinburgh and our dedicated officers continue to monitor this on a daily basis.

The planning for Counter Terrorism Awareness Week began several months ago following the Counter Terrorism Day of Action back in November 2016, which was very warmly received by the public. The focus across this week will be on crowded spaces, so don’t be surprised if you see an increased policing presence in areas where we find large numbers of people frequenting.

Please do not be alarmed by this, but as always, please remain vigilant and report any suspicions or concerns you may have about a person, vehicle, object, or anything else, to police immediately.

Counter Terrorism advice can also be obtained by visiting our website at www.scotland.police.uk.

Chief Superintendent Kenny Macdonald is Divisional Commander for Edinburgh