UPDATE: London Police have announced that they are treating this incident as a “terrorist attack”.
In addition, Radosław Sikorski, a journalist and former Polish politician posted a video of the aftermath of the attack on Twitter. The attacker apparently mowed down several people with his vehicle on Westminster Bridge before reaching the Palace of Westminster.
A car on Westminster Bridge has just mowed down at least 5 people. pic.twitter.com/tdCR9I0NgJ
— Radosław Sikorski (@sikorskiradek) March 22, 2017
There are multiple reports on social media this morning about a shooting that has taken place outside Westminster, the home of the British Parliament. Around 10:50 EDT, British reporter Quentin Letts claimed via Twitter that he “just saw Parliamentary security men shoot a man who had attacked a policeman.”
The Press Association is reporting that there is a “major security alert at the Palace of Westminster” after a knife-wielding man “charged through the gates into the front yard of the parliamentary compound.” The report, quoted in the Guardian, goes on to say:
Amid shouts and screams, sounds similar to gunfire rang out.
Two people were seen to be lying within Old Palace Yard, immediately outside Westminster Hall.
The sitting in the House of Commons was suspended while police officers sealed off the area around the incident.
Immediately before the incident, at around 2.45pm, a crowd of passers-by was seen running from the direction of Westminster Bridge and around the corner into Parliament Square.
Parliament appears to be on lockdown at this moment. Early reports in breaking situations such as these are frequently incorrect. More on this story as it develops.
A Reuters photographer on the scene claims that “a dozen” people were injured in the attack.
UPDATE: Israeli journalist Dana Regev reports that the attack began with a man driving a car into the railings outside the palace.
Britain is often presented as an exemplar of the success of gun control, and indeed its people face restrictions on their right to keep and bear arms far more severe than Europeans do, let alone Americans. It has not, however, stopped violence of this nature. Last year, Jo Cox, a sitting member of Parliament, was stabbed, shot and killed outside a library in England.