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14 Aug, 2018 12:52

London Houses of Parliament attack: What do we know so far?

London Houses of Parliament attack: What do we know so far?

Questions remain over the Houses of Parliament attack in London, which left three people injured and a suspect in custody. As Britain remains on high alert for terrorism, here’s what is known about Tuesday’s incident so far.

The attack

At around 7:40am on Tuesday, a silver Ford Fiesta rammed into a number of pedestrians and cyclists before crashing into steel barriers outside the Houses of Parliament.

According to witnesses, the car was soon surrounded by armed police. Footage posted on social media showed the suspect being taken from the vehicle before being handcuffed.

“The car drove at speed and towards the barriers. I was walking on the other side [of the road],” said eyewitness Ewalina Ochab. “I heard some noise and someone screamed.

“I turned around and I saw a silver car driving very fast close to the railings, maybe even on the pavement. The person driving did not go out of the vehicle.”

READ MORE: VIDEO of Houses of Parliament suspected terror attack released

Three people were treated at the scene, two of whom were then taken to hospital with non-serious injuries. The nearby St. Thomas’ Hospital confirmed that it was treating one patient whose injuries were not life-threatening.

The motive

In light of several previous attacks – on Westminster Bridge in March 2017 – and a number of suspected attacks that transpired to be accidents, speculation was rife as to whether the incident was an act of terrorism.

Scotland Yard’s head of counter-terrorism, Neil Basu, stated: “Given that this appears to be a deliberate attack – the method and this being an iconic site – we are treating it as a terrorist incident.”

At the time of publishing, no terrorist organization has claimed responsibility for the attack. Previous attacks on London were quickly claimed by Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS).

Speculation over the motive is being fueled by questions that remain about the attacker.

The suspect

Police confirmed that they arrested a man in his late 20s. After armed police surrounded his vehicle, the suspect was removed from the scene and taken to a police station in south London.

Officers proceeded to search his vehicle, confirming in a later statement that he had acted alone and that there were no weapons found in the car.

Speaking to the press, Basu confirmed that the suspect was not known to security services. He is not currently cooperating with the investigation.

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