Security review of MPs and PSMs following the murder of Sir David Amess


A security REVIEW of MPs and MPs is underway after the murder of Sir David Amess, which as emerged yesterday is being treated as a terrorist incident.

The Tory MP, a father of five, was fatally stabbed on Friday while meeting with voters in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex.

A 25-year-old Briton arrested at the scene is suspected of murder.

Scotland Yard said the country’s most senior counterterrorism officer, Deputy Assistant Commissioner Dean Haydon, officially declared the incident to be terrorism and said early investigations revealed “a potential motivation related to the Islamist extremism “.

Yesterday Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Labor leader Sir Keir Starmer laid flowers at the stabbing scene.

Interior Minister Priti Patel, who was also present, said politicians “could not be intimidated” after the attack and that a security review of MPs was underway.

President Holyrood described Amess’ murder as “an attack on our democracy” and assured MSPs that parliament would provide them with additional security.

Alison Johnstone has pledged the Scottish Parliament will provide its elected members with all necessary advice and support and revealed she has spoken to Police Scotland, with the force saying she will contact MSPs “urgently” to discuss arrangements in terms of security.

It followed an announcement by the parliament legal person that it would fund any upgrades to security in MSP constituency offices on the basis of police recommendations.

Safety advice for performing surgeries was also reiterated, including sitting behind a table “so that it can act as a barrier if necessary” and always informing relatives or colleagues where they are.

In his letter to the members, Johnstone (below) wrote: ‘While all our thoughts are with Sir David’s family, friends and colleagues, it is understandable that at a time like this we are reflecting. to our own work and the challenges we face.

The National: Newly elected Scottish Parliament Speaker Alison Johnstone at the Scottish Parliament's Oath and Affirmation Ceremony

“Representing our constituents is one of the greatest privileges of being a member of the Scottish Parliament, but it is a privilege which unfortunately can lead to threats and fears for our safety, that of our staff and our families. ”

A joint statement issued by all Southend mosques condemned the deadly attack on Amess as an “untenable atrocity”.

Religious leaders said the 69-year-old MP for Southend West was a “staunch friend of our Muslim community” and attended key events including weddings, mosque openings and the launch of the first Boy Scout Group Muslim city.

The statement read: “The murder of Sir David was an untenable atrocity, committed on the grounds of a place of worship and we condemn it in the strongest possible terms.

“This act was committed in the name of blind hatred, and we look forward to the perpetrator being brought to justice.”

The incident, which occurred five years after the murder of Labor MP Jo Cox, sparked a new debate over the safety of politicians.

Some MPs continued to perform constituency surgeries yesterday, and others have promised it won’t change the way they engage with residents.

A spokesperson for the National Council of Chiefs of Police said every UK MP will be contacted by Operation Bridger, a national police safety and protection operation established in 2016, to discuss their security arrangements.

SNP MP Joanna Cherry called for threats against MPs to be taken more seriously, citing a case earlier this year in which a man – previously convicted of a knife offense – admitted to her having sent abusive messages.

Conservative Councilor Kevin Buck, vice-president of the Southend West Riding Association, said he was against moving surgery meetings to Zoom.

Labor MP Naz Shah, who has previously been the target of racist abuse, said there was “no right or wrong answer” on whether or not MPs should continue to practice their lawsuits. surgeries.

She said: “I have received so many death threats, and it could have been any of us. It’s really close to where I live. I just think you have to respect every MP.

“Some will have the ‘Yes, we will continue’ point of view, and some people will not feel comfortable.”

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