Tourism

Aussies caught up in London terror attack

Hannah Edensor

A number of Australians were injured in the tragic terror attack in London over the weekend, which saw at least seven people killed and 48 more injured.

Attackers mowed pedestrians down on the iconic London Bridge, before going on a stabbing spree and terrorising revellers in the popular Borough Market district.

Both areas are busy areas and major tourist hotspots, with the attack taking place at around 10pm local time on Saturday night.

The entire area was placed on lockdown as police searched for the assailants, and evacuated the area of people. The current threat level for international terrorism in the UK remains at severe, which while not the highest level still suggests “an attack is highly likely”.

Australia’s own government travel website, Smartraveller, said, “There is a heightened threat of terrorist attack in the UK.”

Meanwhile, a concert in honour of the victims of Manchester’s bombing just weeks ago is underway, with huge music stars convening to promote “One Love Manchester” and proceeds going to those impacted by the bomb attack on May 22, which struck the Manchester Arena at the end of a concert by Ariana Grande.

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop confirmed three Australians were injured in the attack, including Darwin man, Andrew Morrison, who was identified when a video of him being interviewed, still nursing a neck wound, was posted online.

“He got me,” he said of the attack. “I dodged it, I ducked and weaved (but) I got f*cked up.”

Per SMH, Morrison said he was on his last night out in London and had just left a bar where he was watching the Champions League soccer final, when he saw what he thought was a fight break out across the road.

“All a sudden a guy comes up with a knife and … stabs me there and I just push him off,” he said.

londonattack

Another Australian caught up in the attack was identified as Brisbane woman Candice Hedge, who also sustained a neck injury and was taken to hospital to undergo surgery.

Per the ABC, Hedge’s grandfather Brian Hedge said, “She works in a restaurant near there and I’m not sure if it was in the restaurant or in the other area around it like markets — and she was hiding apparently and someone was leaving and saw her hiding and came back and stabbed her — bloody awful”.

Hedge told him the stab wound had missed her main arteries and windpipe and she was recovering well after receiving stitches.

Julie Bishop said that Morrison was on his way back to Australia, while Hedge is still in hospital.

Consular staff in London are seeking more information about a third Australian who was injured in the attack. But according to SMH, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has expressed “very real concerns” for a fourth Australian, who’s identity remains unknown.

“There are two other Australians, so that brings it to a total of four, about whom we have very real concerns. But at this stage, we’re not able to say anything more,” Turnbull said.

“We have been in touch with their families, in close touch with their families, as we seek to find confirmation of the circumstances of the two other Australians.”

As for those in London currently,  the Metropolitan police assistant commissioner, Mark Rowley, said there will be “increased physical measures” on London’s bridges.

Per The Guardian, police have urged people to stay away from the affected areas, with cordons around Borough Market likely to remain in place until later today.

Borough station reopened on Sunday evening, while London Bridge station will be exit-only when it reopens on Monday morning from 5am.

Met police assistant commissioner Mark Rowley has issued a statement, which per Twitter read:

“We are hopeful that some of the cordons around London Bridge station will be released during the course of tomorrow morning, but consult TfL website before you set out on your journeys into and around London tomorrow.

“The public can expect to see additional police – both armed and unarmed officers – across the capital as you would expect in these circumstances, and our security and policing plans for events are being reviewed. The public will also see increased physical measures on London’s bridges to keep the public safe.”

Meanwhile, US President Donald Trump used the attack as a way of promoting the travel ban.

“We need to be smart, vigilant and tough. We need the courts to give us back our rights. We need the Travel Ban as an extra level of safety,” Trump said.

Image: Twitter


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