LONDON ATTACK Canadian among those killed

Posted on 06/05/2017 | About London, United Kingdom

At about 10 pm local time Saturday, three men drove a van into pedestrians on London Bridge. The attackers, wielding blades and knives, then ran down a set of stairs into Borough Market where they stabbed people in several different restaurants. The attack lasted about eight minutes, police said, but seven people were killed and at least 48 were hospitalized.

The attackers were shot dead by police, and 12 people have been arrested in Barking in east London. Raids are going on elsewhere in the city.

A Canadian was among those killed in the attack, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said.

Trudeau said in a written statement released Sunday that the government wouldn't be commenting further on the death out of respect for the family.

The Canadian government is advising citizens to be vigilant in the wake of the attack. The government and diplomats on the ground in London are advising travellers to avoid the affected areas, follow the instructions of local authorities and monitor local media.

Governor General David Johnston tweeted about the attack, calling it “evil and senseless,” and saying he was, “heartbroken to learn that a Canadian is among those who lost their lives.”

Trudeau said Canada would stand with the UK in the fight against terrorism.

“We grieve with the families and friends of those who have lost loved ones, and wish all those injured a speedy and full recovery,” Trudeau said. “Londoners and people across the United Kingdom have always displayed strength and resilience in the face of adversity. We recently witnessed this after the attacks in Manchester and in the Westminster area of London. This time will be no different.”

This is the third attack in Britain in as many months. Two weeks ago, a suicide bomber blew himself up at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, in northwest England, killing 22 people and injuring dozens more. In March, a British convert to Islam ran down people with a vehicle on Westminster Bridge, killing four before fatally stabbing a police officer on Parliament's grounds.

British Prime Minister Theresa May said Sunday that police had recently foiled five other plots.

Three men were shot dead by police on Saturday, minutes after a van mowed into pedestrians on London Bridge and multiple people were stabbed around nearby Borough Market. Police say seven people were killed and 48 hospitalized.

Security cordons will remain around London Bridge indefinitely.

However, Britain's interior minister says the country's terrorism threat level will not be raised because police believe there are no perpetrators still on the loose.

Home Secretary Amber Rudd says “we don't believe there are additional elements” at large. Rudd told ITV television that more must be done to fight the “onslaught of jihadi propaganda that is radicalizing people online.”

The level was raised to “critical” for several days after the March 22 concert bombing in Manchester, as police raced to track down the attacker's possible accomplices.

It now stands at “severe,” meaning an attack is highly likely.

The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it was as carried out by “a detachment of Islamic State fighters.”

However, analysts have said the Islamic State considers anyone whose actions were inspired by the group to essentially be a member.

“This is how ISIS decentralizes its terrorism,” said Laith Alkhouri, a director at Flashpoint, a business risk intelligence company in New York that tracks militant and cyber threats. “As of now, there’s no indication that ISIS orchestrated or directed these attacks.”