London Bridge: World leaders condemn deadly attack

Prominent figures across the globe express solidarity, outrage after six people are killed in a car and stabbing attack.

Forty-eight people were wounded before the attackers were shot dead by the police [Hannah McKay/Reuters]
Forty-eight people were wounded before the attackers were shot dead by the police [Hannah McKay/Reuters]

British and world leaders have condemned an attack in London that killed at least seven people and wounded 48, only days before the UK’s general election.

A van on Saturday night ploughed into pedestrians on London Bridge before three men with knives went on a stabbing spree in the nearby Borough Market before being shot dead by the police.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

READ MORE: Panic and horror at London Bridge

Prominent figures, including celebrities, across the globe expressed their solidarity in unison after the attack.

Prime Minister Theresa May confirmed that the “terrible incident in London” was being treated as “a potential act of terrorism” and said she would hold emergency ministerial talks. A spokesman for May later said that the ruling Conservative Party had suspended national campaigning on Sunday in advance of the June 8 vote.

Opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn said that the Labour Party was also suspending campaigning: “Brutal and shocking incidents reported in London. My thoughts are with the victims and their families. Thank you to the emergency services.”

London Mayor Sadiq Khan said the attack was “a deliberate and cowardly attack on innocent Londoners and visitors to our city enjoying their Saturday night”, and called on people to stay calm and vigilant. 

He also said he did not think Thursday’s election should be postponed because of events in London.

“One of the things that we can do to show that we aren’t going to be cowed, is by voting on Thursday and making sure that we understand the importance of our democracy, our civil liberties and our human rights,” Khan said.

Nicola Sturgeon, the leader of the Scottish Nationalist Party, which also suspended campaigning, said: “Dreadful news from London. My thoughts are with all those affected.”


Trump: ‘We are with you’

Several leaders across the world were also quick to condemn the attack.

“Whatever the United States can do to help out in London and the UK, we will be there – WE ARE WITH YOU. GOD BLESS!”, US President Donald Trump said in a tweet.

The US State Department called the assaults “cowardly attacks targeting innocent civilians” and added: “The United States stands ready to provide any assistance authorities in the United Kingdom may request.”

European Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker also took to Twitter:

French President Emmanuel Macron said that “in the face of this new tragedy, France is more than ever at Britain’s side. My thoughts go out to the victims and their loved ones”. 

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said: “Awful news from London tonight. We’re monitoring the situation.”

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull offered his condolences: “Prayers and resolute solidarity are today as always with the people of Britain in the face of the shocking terrorist attacks in London.”

READ MORE: London Bridge – Deaths after car and stabbing attack

Bill English, prime minister of New Zealand, said his country’s “thoughts are with the victims of today’s attack, along with their families and friends. Our hearts go out to you. Too many lives are being taken by terrorists set on inflicting pain and suffering on innocent people.”

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi also condemned the attacks in London, saying they caused shock and anguish, adding that his thoughts are with the families of the deceased and offered prayers for the injured.

Harun Khan, secretary-general of the Muslim Council of Britain, has said that he was “appalled and angered” by the attack, adding: “That this should happen in this month of Ramadan, when many Muslims were praying and fasting, only goes to show that these people respect neither life nor faith.”

German Chancellor Angela Merkel voiced her sympathy: “Today, we are united across all borders in horror and sadness, but equally in determination. I stress for Germany: in the fight against all forms of terrorism, we stand firmly and decisively at the side of Great Britain.”

“This crime is shocking in its barbarism and its cynicism,” Russian President Vladimir Putin wrote in a telegram to Theresa May, according to the Kremlin.

Finnish Prime Minister Juha Sipila“Shocked and saddened by the news from London. Strongly condemn the attacks. Our thoughts go out to everyone affected.”

US pop star Ariana Grande, whose concert in Manchester last month was the scene of a deadly suicide bombing, tweeted simply: “Praying for London.”

Irish singer Niall Horan tweeted: “Thoughts are with the people of London today after yet another horrific attack.” 

London Bridge: Deaths after car and stabbing attacks

Source : Al Jazeera, News Agencies


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