Multiple people have been killed in a chaotic series of attacks outside British Parliament on 22 March 2017. The attacks included a man driving a vehicle through crowds of people on the iconic Westminster Bridge just outside Parliament, reported the BBC:
London Ambulance said it had treated at least 10 people on Westminster Bridge.
Junior doctor Colleen Anderson from St Thomas’ Hospital confirmed the death of the woman and said a number of other people were hurt – some with “catastrophic” injuries.
She said she also treated a police officer in his 30s with a head injury, who had been taken to King’s College Hospital.
Four people, including the attacker, are reported dead. Metropolitan Police shot the reported assailant who began attacking people at around 2:40 in the afternoon, the Telegraph reported:
At least one woman was killed as the attacker drove a grey Hyundai i40 across Westminster Bridge before crashing it into railings then running through the gates of the Palace of Westminster.
At least one of the people being treated in the palace courtyard was wheeled away on a stretcher with their face covered.
Politician Grant Shapps told the Telegraph that he heard gunfire as he walked through the New Palace Yard:
I heard a commotion which might have been a car crashing and then there was shouting and I heard four shots being fired.
Armed police rushed out and me and a group of MPs were told ‘get down, drop down on the floor, get back, get back’.
I knew at that stage it wasn’t a protestor or something. We knew it was serious and real and i immediately felt really exposed. My mind actually switched to some hostile environment training i had done but you never think you will need to use in London. I remembered about getting to a safe area and thought I need to get into the Palace behind those thick walls.
I then went straight to the deputy speaker to get them to suspend the sitting.
This incident took place a year to the day after the coordinated bombing attacks in Brussels that killed 32 people. It was also the same day that a vote on a new Scottish independence referendum was scheduled. According to Reuters:
The Scottish parliament issued a statement saying it would increase security measures, although no specific threat to Scotland had been detected.
London’s permission for a new Scottish referendum is needed because any legally binding vote on United Kingdom constitutional matters has to be authorized by the UK parliament.
Prime Minister Theresa May has not completely ruled out another Scottish independence vote but has vowed to fight for what she has called the “precious union” of the United Kingdom.
The vote has now been suspended.