London, June 4 (IANS) Six people were killed and 48 others injured in two terror strikes in London in which three male attackers were shot dead by the police, the media reported.
The attack began on London Bridge when a white transit-style van drove into a crowd of people around 10 p.m. on Saturday, reports the BBC.
The van was headed toward the London Bridge station, on the south bank of the river.
The vehicle continued to drive towards Borough Market, just south of the bridge, where three assailants got out and attempted to stab civilians at a restaurant, including an officer from British Transport Police.
However, armed officers then shot the suspects within eight minutes of the first call.
Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley said: “The suspects were wearing what looked like explosive vests but these were later established to be hoaxes.”
He said it was currently believed there were only three attackers involved.
“We are treating this as a terrorist incident and a full investigation is already underway,” the BBC quoted Rowley as saying.
The ruling Conservative Party has suspended its nation-wide general election campaigning and Prime Minister Theresa May will chair an emergency meeting of the government’s crisis committee, Cobra, on Sunday morning.
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said he was “appalled and furious that these cowardly terrorists would deliberately target innocent Londoners”, reports the Guardian.
Khan said the emergency services “reacted heroically…As a result of their swift action, fewer people have died than would otherwise have been the case.”
Opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn described the incidents as “brutal and shocking”.
US President Donald Trump was briefed about the attacks by the national security team, CNN quoted White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer as saying.
Trump tweeted: “Whatever the US can do to help out in London and the UK, we will be there — We are with you. God bless.”
London Bridge Tube station and the London Bridge were closed in both directions.
The Metropolitan Police confirmed there would be “additional police and officers deployed across the capital” in the coming days.
This is the third terror attack in the UK since March, reports the BBC.
On 22 May, 22 people were killed and 116 injured when the attacker, Salman Abedi, detonated a home-made bomb in Manchester Arena’s foyer as crowds were leaving a performance by US singer Ariana Grande late in the evening.
In the wake of the attack, the UK government increased the terror alert to critical, the highest level, and deployed the army to support police.
On 22 March, six people died, including the attacker, and at least 50 people were injured in an attack near the Houses of Parliament.