Live video: Policeman stabbed outside parliament; attacker shot, '˜others mown down'

A POLICEMAN has been stabbed and his apparent attacker shot by officers in a major security incident at the Houses of Parliament.

Police outside the Palace of Westminster, London, after sounds similar to gunfire have been heard

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Around three shots rang out outside the Palace of Westminster after a man ran through the gates into the front yard of the parliamentary compound apparently waving a knife.

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Two people were seen being treated on the ground in New Palace Yard amid shouts and screams.

An air ambulance landed in Parliament Square and a regular ambulance came in through the front gates as medics rushed to help the injured people.

Armed police cleared the area around the incident and Parliament Square was closed to traffic.

A Downing Street source confirmed that Prime Minister Theresa May was “OK”.

Mrs May was seen being ushered into a silver Jaguar car as what sounded like gunfire rang out at Parliament during the incident at around 2.45pm.

Emergency services close to the Palace of Westminster

As the sitting in the House of Commons was suspended, Commons Leader David Lidington told MPs: “What I am able to say to the House is there has been a serious incident within the estate.

“It seems that a police officer has been stabbed, that the alleged assailant was shot by armed police.

“An air ambulance is currently attending the scene to remove the casualties.

“There are also reports of further violent incidents in the vicinity of the Palace of Westminster but I hope colleagues on all sides will appreciate that it’d be wrong of me to go into further details until we have confirmation from the police and from the House security authorities about what is going on.”

Police close to the Palace of Westminster, London, after sounds similar to gunfire were heard close to the Palace of Westminster.

After the incident, Radoslaw Sikorski posted a video to Twitter purporting to show people lying injured in the road on Westminster Bridge.

Mr Sikorski, a senior fellow at Harvard’s Centre for European Studies, wrote: “A car on Westminster Bridge has just mowed down at least 5 people.”

Witnesses described seeing a middle-aged man carrying a knife and running.

Jayne Wilkinson said: “We were taking photos of Big Ben and we saw all the people running towards us, and then there was an Asian guy in about his 40s carrying a knife about seven or eight inches long.

Police outside the Palace of Westminster, London, after sounds similar to gunfire have been heard

“And then there were three shots fired, and then we crossed the road and looked over. The man was on the floor with blood.

“He had a lightweight jacket on, dark trousers and a shirt.

“He was running through those gates, towards Parliament, and the police were chasing him.”

Her partner David Turner added: “There was a stampede of people running out.

“You saw the people and you thought ‘what the hell is going on’.”

Kate Langston, The Yorkshire Post’s Parliamentary Correspondent, said: “I was in Portcullis House to interview someone and was making my way back to my office when the police started shouting at everyone to take cover and they moved us back into the building.

Police outside the Palace of Westminster, London, after sounds similar to gunfire have been heard

“There was a lot of panic initially but it has calmed down a little now. It sounds like there were three separate incidents, one on Westminster Bridge and one in Parliament Square.

“The whole of Westminster seems to be in lock down.”

Press Association Political Editor Andrew Woodcock witnessed the scenes unfolding from his office window overlooking New Palace Yard.

“I heard shouts and screams from outside and looked out, and there was a group of maybe 40 or 50 people running round the corner from Bridge Street into Parliament Square,” said Mr Woodcock.

“They appeared to be running away from something. As the group arrived at the Carriage Gates, where policemen are posted at the security entrance, a man suddenly ran out of the crowd and into the yard. He seemed to be holding up a long kitchen knife.

“I heard what sounded like shots - I think about three of them - and then the next thing I knew there were two people lying on the ground and others running to help them. Armed police were quickly on the scene and I heard them shouting to people to get out of the Yard.”

A witness, who did not want to be named, saw Mrs May and her undercover police detail near the area of Parliament where ministerial cars are parked.

He said there were undercover officers in a 4x4 vehicle in the car park.

“We just heard gunshots inside Parliament,” he said.

“It looked like they are taking her away.”

The Prime Minister was seen getting into the back of a silver Jaguar before driving off - first apparently heading to Black Rod’s entrance but then turning towards Carriage Gates, near to where the incident took place.

A woman at the scene was on the opposite side of the square when she heard shots ring out at about 2.45pm.

She said: “We literally just heard shots and then saw people running, and we went to have a look.”

The woman, from South Africa and living in Ireland, said she and two friends went towards the palace gates and saw a man lying on the floor inside.

She said: “I saw a body, they were working on the floor. They were just inside the gates.

“He had one gunshot wound to the right side of his chest. I don’t know if he was dead or alive, but people were working on him.

“I saw that needed medical attention and I asked if I could help because I am a doctor, but they said they were fine.

“Then the police moved us back.”

Press Association reporter Laura Harding, who was in Westminster at the time of the incident, said: “Everyone has been evacuated into Central Lobby, including a group of schoolchildren and kitchen staff.

“Around 15 schoolchildren aged around 10, with armed police coming through the lobby now.

“The children are really calm, the teachers are comforting them.

“Everyone is standing around on their phones.

“There are also a bunch of young people from the Hammersmith Boxing Club in their tracksuits and the British Lionhearts boxing group.”

Commons Leader David Lidington told MPs: “What I am able to say to the House is there has been a serious incident within the estate.

“It seems that a police officer has been stabbed, that the alleged assailant was shot by armed police.

“An air ambulance is currently attending the scene to remove the casualties.

“There are also reports of further violent incidents in the vicinity of the Palace of Westminster but I hope colleagues on all sides will appreciate that it’d be wrong of me to go into further details until we have confirmation from the police and from the House security authorities about what is going on.”

Witness Don Brind said he heard shots being fired and saw two people apparently injured on the ground.

Mr Brind, a researcher for MPs, said: “I heard some shouting and saw some running out of the corner of my eye and then a short time after that there was a shot. I looked and I saw a civilian on the ground, with somebody standing over him with what I assumed to be a gun.

“Then I looked and about 10 yards away, there was a yellow jacketed person on the ground, who appeared to be alive and talking.”

He said he assumed the person in the high-visibility jacket was a police officer.

Dennis Burns, who was just entering Parliament for a meeting when the security alert happened, said: “As I was coming through the doors at Portcullis House, a policeman grabbed someone who was coming in and threw him out.

“As we were coming though the glass doors I was told by one security guard to get out while another one told me to get in.

“As I walked in I heard a security guard get a radio message saying ‘a policeman has been stabbed’.

“Then I walked in as police officers and security start rushing out of the front doors on to the street.

“When I got inside I was wondering what the hell was going on and I saw dozens of panicked people running down the street. The first stream was around 30 people and the second stream was 70 people.

“It looked like they were running for their lives.”

Emergency services close to the Palace of Westminster
Police close to the Palace of Westminster, London, after sounds similar to gunfire were heard close to the Palace of Westminster.
Police outside the Palace of Westminster, London, after sounds similar to gunfire have been heard
Police outside the Palace of Westminster, London, after sounds similar to gunfire have been heard