On 2:40 p.m. the London Ambulance Service Deputy Director received a call of reports of an "incident" on the Westminster Bridge in London. The incident was soon followed by news of an attack on the U.K. Parliament, leaving many to ask themselves, "Were the U.K. Parliament shooting and Westminster Bridge incident related?" As of now, U.K. Metropolitan Police are treating the incidents as a connected terrorist attack until further information is made available.
Update: According to the Associated Press, British police late Wednesday evening raised the death toll in the Parliament attack to five. At least 40 people were injured.
According to initial reports, a policeman was stabbed and the assailant was shot outside Britain's Houses of Parliament on Wednesday. Currently, according to The Guardian, police are treating the two attacks as related incidents. It appears as though the assailant ran over helpless individuals in his car on the Westminster Bridge, prior to crashing the same vehicle into the perimeter fence surrounding parliament. A police officer was reportedly stabbed before the assailant was shot by armed police in the area. Prior to the attack, the House of Commons was in session. It was quickly and immediately suspended directly after the attack took place, and lawmakers were asked to remain inside and away from the windows until the situation could be stabilized. According to initial reports, 12 people were injured on the bridge and one individual, assumed to be the police officer, was injured outside parliament. The BBC has since confirmed that a woman and the police officer who was stabbed, have died. Humza Yousaf, a ministers of the Scottish government, has suspended Scottish parliament in an act of reverence and solidarity.
A member of Parliament, Sir Gerald Howarth, gave a statement regarding the situation, saying:
It appears to be very, very serious indeed. The Leader of the House has told us it's been confirmed that one police officer here has been stabbed. It appeared that a car was coming towards the House of Commons moving down pedestrians on the way and the driver then got access to the parliamentary estate stabbed a police officer and was shot.
The attack occurred on the year anniversary of the terrorist attack on Brussels, where 32 people lost their lives and over 320 people were injured. “It’s the responsibility of each and every one of us to make our society more humane, and more just. Let’s learn to listen to each other again, to respect each other’s weaknesses," King Philippe said to citizens at the memorial service honoring the lives lost and affected. Now as the U.K. heals from yet another apparent terrorist attack, those words even more poignant.