Saturday, March 25News For London

Londoners can now learn how to act “effectively” in terror attacks

London Bridge. (Image: Claudia Dashwood).

“It is never bad to be prepared for terrorism incidents.”

In a bid to protect the UK from terrorism, police are encouraging the public to sign up to an online counter terrorism course.

Any member of the public can become a ‘CT citizen’ through the ACT Awareness eLearning course, which was previously only available to those working in crowded places.

The course takes about 45 minutes to complete, with only seven modules.

Originally created in partnership with Marks & Spencer for their employees, the online lessons teach people how to spot potential terrorism behaviour and what to do in the event of an attack.

In a statement, Deputy Assistant Commissioner Lucy D’Orsi, Senior National Coordinator for Protective Security said: “The festive period is obviously a very busy one – so this is a good time to join up and become a CT Citizen.”

The Counter Terrorism police said the choice to make the training public was not in response to the London Bridge attack 10 days ago.

London student Frida Björnberg, 26, said: “It would be good if people could know how to safely and effectively step in if something is going on, like what happened on the bridge.”

“I don’t think it will help prevent terrorism, but it will definitely help with terrorism incidents.”

Another student, Julie Gangsted-Rasmussen, 23, said: “It is never bad to be prepared for terrorism incidents, like management of chaotic situations.”

She said that it could help other civilians be more aware of the signs and behaviour of terrorists.

The top country of terrorism-related arrests since 11 September 2001 is the United Kingdom with 2,219 arrests according to Home Office data.

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There’s a large gap between the top two countries, with Algeria following the UK with 173 arrests.

In the UK, 127 people have died in terrorism related incidents between 2000 and 2017 according to Global Terrorism Data (GTD) data.

Deaths in terror related incidents in the UK 1970-2015, Global Terrorism Data. (Image: Claudia Dashwood)

The above figure does not include recent terrorism events such as the 2017 Manchester bombings, attacks in Westminster and Borough markets, or the recent London Bridge event.

A terrorist wearing a fake suicide vest stabbed and killed Jack Merritt, 25, and Saskia Jones, 23, and attacked at least 10 other people almost two weeks ago.

Civilians stepped in and reprimanded Usman Khan, 28, before cops intervened and shot him dead.

In the event of a weapons-based terrorist attack, the Met police introduced “Run, Hide, Tell” in 2017.

The terrorism threat level remains at substantial in the UK after recently being reduced to severe, meaning an attack is likely.