London attack: More armed police on Scots streets

Armed police near London Bridge
Armed police near London Bridge

Nicola Sturgeon has said more armed police will be on Scotland streets following the London terrorist attacks.

The First Minister stressed there is “no intelligence of any specific threat” to Scotland but urged people to be vigilant.

Nicola Sturgeon

Nicola Sturgeon

Three men were shot dead after killing seven people and injuring 48 more with a van and knife attack in the UK capital on Saturday night.

Ms Sturgeon condemned the “despicable and cowardly” attack, adding there is no information currently suggesting any victims are Scottish but said “it is not yet possible to be definitive about that”.

She said: “In terms of the Police Scotland response here, it is important to stress that there is no intelligence of any specific threat to Scotland.

“However, the police will ensure appropriate protective security measures are implemented.

“As was the case after the Manchester attack, the public can expect to see a more visible police presence, particularly in busy areas.

“That will include armed police - the number of Armed Response Vehicles on duty today has been substantially increased.

“At what I know is an anxious time, my message to the public is to be vigilant, report anything of suspicion to the police - but otherwise continue to live your lives as normal.

“Last night’s attack was another reminder of the need to challenge extremism robustly and directly. We must unite as a society to do so.”

Ms Sturgeon added: “I have no doubt that - just as we saw after previous attacks, most recently the attack in Westminster - the people of London will pull together, in all of their diversity, and refuse to be cowed by acts of terrorism. As they do so, we stand with them in solidarity and defiance.”

The First Minister told the BBC a review of the counter-terrorism strategy is “appropriate” in the wake of the London atrocities which come less than two weeks after the terrorist bombing at the Ariana Grande concert in Manchester on Monday May 22.

Her comments follow a meeting of Scottish Government’s Resilience committee.

Many parties suspended national campaigning on Sunday, however Prime Minister Theresa May said the General Election on Thursday will go ahead.

Police Scotland Assistant Chief Constable Steve Johnson said the force “continues to dynamically review all safety and security plans and operations”.

He added: “An element of this includes ensuring our armed policing and specialist resources are appropriately deployed.

“The UK threat level remains at severe. We have no specific information that Scotland is at risk of attack and I would ask you to go about your business as normal, remaining alert but not alarmed.”

He said the force will not tolerate attempts to target any community by “any misguided individual or group” and said officers continue to work to counter the threat from terrorism.

He urged people to be vigilant and contact police if they suspect something is wrong.