Terror attack on London 'inevitable' says Met chief

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir John Stevens has warned that a terrorist attack on London is "inevitable".

Speaking at a joint press conference with London Mayor Ken Livingstone in London's City Hall today, Sir John said that security services had trebled their efforts in an attempt to foil a possible attack.

The Metropolitan Police Commissioner said that since September 11 there had been 520 arrests, of these half had been charged and around 90 people were expected to go on to court.

He said: "We do know that we have stopped terrorist attacks happening in London."

But he said there was an "inevitability" that an attack would get through. Sir John said that it was his responsibility to make sure that this did not happen.

Sir John told reporters on Tuesday that measures, including fast patrol boats, were in place to prevent an attack via the Thames which has been described by security experts as the "Achilles heel" of the city.

Yesterday the Home Secretary David Blunkett interviewed by the BBC urged people to be "alert but not alarmed" as he said it was "quite likely" that an attack by terrorists was being planned.

British Transport Police have stepped up security operations with plain-clothes officers given stop and search powers in a bid to thwart a Madrid-style attack on the London Underground.


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