London Bridge attack
Police faced a horrific and confusing scene, with stab victims in the street and reports suicide attackers were on the loose.
One of the first police officers on the scene of the London Bridge attack has described the “pandemonium” as people ran for their lives while others lay bleeding on the ground.
Inspector Jim Cole said he and his team were about to clock off at Peckham police station when the call came in.
He said he immediately clicked that it could be a terror attack.
“We ran down to the yard and started getting the team back in the vans,” he said.
“It was like something out of a movie with police officers running everywhere. Everybody was jumping into cars, getting cars going.”
The 41-year-old and his officers rushed to Borough High Street and made their way on foot to the market where the attackers were looking for people to kill.
“We had some updates on the radio about at least three men attacking people with knives, but it wasn’t really a clear situation and we were not really sure what to expect,” he said.
The ringleader of the London Bridge terror attack was so open about his extremist views that he appeared in a fly-on-the-wall documentary entitled The Jihadis Next Door, it emerged on Monday.
Khuram Butt, 27, a British national who was born in Pakistan, was filmed praying in front of an Isil flag in London’s Regent’s Park as part of a controversial Channel 4 programme that was broadcast in January last year.
By the time the documentary went out, the father of two had already been under investigation by the police and MI5 for six months.
The second terrorist was named as Rachid Redouane, 30, who police said had claimed to be both Moroccan and Libyan. He was also known to use the name Rachid Elkhdar, and was understood to be in possession of an Irish identity card when he was shot dead by police. Redouane, who was married to a British woman and had a daughter with her, is thought to have lived in Dublin previously. It was not clear when or how he arrived in the UK.
Redouane, a chef, was seen visiting his wife, Charisse, only three hours before he and his two accomplices carried out the attack, neighours said.
He and his wife are reported to have split up over their differing views on religion, after they clashed over the best way to raise their child.
Police said while they believed they knew who the third terrorist was they were still working with international partners to formally identify him.
The disclosure that he is not British will raise questions about how recently he moved to the UK and under what circumstances he had entered the country.
At least a dozen Molotov cocktails were found in the van used by the attackers, according to reports last night. Officers are said to be treating the bottles filled with clear liquid as petrol bombs.
A vigil was held at London Bridge last night for the victims of the attack.