People fleeing outside the British Parliament in London on Wednesday. (Screen shot via BBC)

Update (6 a.m. PST):

The news agency Amaq, which has ties to the radical group Islamic State, has stated that a “soldier for the Islamic State carried out the operation in answer to calls to target the people of coalition states,” according to Sky News. Sky also reports that “the phrasing suggests the attacker was inspired by Islamic State, and had not been directly trained by it.”

Meanwhile, the British Intelligence Agency MI5 is coming under criticism for having considered the Westminster assailant only a “peripheral figure” and not including him on its list of the 3,000 most dangerous suspects.

Update (3/23/2017 4 a.m. PST): Watch Prime Minister Theresa May’s statement to Parliament regarding the attack that left five dead and 40 injured in the British capital on Wednesday afternoon, just outside the building where she spoke:

May has confirmed that the assailant was born in the U.K. and was known to British intelligence agencies. Describing the incident as “an attack on free people everywhere,” the PM added that the “best response to terrorism” was for Britons to continue their daily lives with “millions of acts of normality” in order to show that the British people “will never give in.”

Authorities also stated Thursday that six counterterrorism raids in the cities of London and Birmingham led to eight arrests of individuals believed to be involved in the attack on the House of Parliament.

— Posted by Natasha Hakimi Zapata


In a case that British authorities are treating as a terrorist attack, a man used an automobile to fatally injure three people and hurt 40 others on Wednesday afternoon before he stabbed a police officer to death. The assailant himself was killed by police bullets moments later on the grounds of Parliament. Those who were struck by the automobile were on nearby Westminster Bridge.

The BBC reported Wednesday night:

[Prime Minister] Theresa May said the attack was “sick and depraved” and struck at values of liberty, democracy and freedom of speech.

The attacker has not been named by police.

Acting Deputy Commissioner and head of counter terrorism at the Metropolitan Police, Mark Rowley, said they think they know who he is and that he was inspired by international and Islamist-related terrorism, but gave no further details.

The attack unfolded at about 14.40 GMT [2:40 p.m. London time] when a single attacker drove a car along a pavement over Westminster Bridge, near the Houses of Parliament in central London, killing at least two people and injuring many more [one of whom died later].

The car then crashed into railings outside the Houses of Parliament.

The attacker, armed with a knife, ran to Parliament where he was confronted by the police. [Policeman Keith Palmer, 48,] who was not armed, was then stabbed and killed.

The attacker was shot dead by armed officers.

To ensure their safety, members of Parliament were locked in the House of Commons for four hours after the shooting. The New York Times wrote that Prime Minister May was “rushed into a vehicle and spirited back to her office.” She later held a meeting of the government’s emergency committee, the newspaper said.

The Guardian posted a video of the aftermath of the Westminster Bridge violence:

More images of the chaos in London were shared on Twitter:

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson released a brief statement:

White House press secretary Sean Spicer also addressed the attacks:

—Posted by Emma Niles

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