MP Mike Penning pays tribute to emergency services after Westminster attacks

Mike Penning MP was in Westminster as the attacks happened on Wednesday afternoon

Mike Penning MP was in Westminster as the attacks happened on Wednesday afternoon

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Hemel Hempstead MP Mike Penning has praised the actions of emergency services following the attacks in Westminster yesterday.

A police officer, PC Keith Palmer, died yesterday afternoon after confronting the attacker and being stabbed. He was one of four fatalities, including two members of the public and the terrorist, the Metropolitan Police has confirmed.

MPs were locked inside Parliament as the tragic events unfolded outside the building yesterday, and Mr Penning - a former Police Minister - praised those who protected them from harm.

He said: “My thoughts and prayers are with the families of those who have lost their lives and with those who have been injured in this appalling attack.

“The full picture is still not clear, but I would particularly like to praise the emergency services who responded very quickly.

"As a former Police Minister I am particularly aware of the dangers our police officers face on a day to day basis, putting their lives on the line to ensure the safety of our elected representatives, their staff and the staff of the Houses of Parliament.”

Mark Rowley, the national lead for Counter Terrorism Policing and the Acting Deputy Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, gave an update on the attacks this morning.

He said: “Greater clarity is now developing regarding the casualty figures as we have now collated information from the public and five hospitals - the latest figures I have are that there are currently four dead and 29 people were treated in hospital.

“We are still collating numbers of walking wounded and of those in hospital sadly seven of them are in a critical condition.

“Tragically the deaths included PC Keith Palmer who was protecting Parliament, and two members of the public - a woman aged in her mid 40s and a man aged in his mid 50s.

“The fourth man of course was the terrorist who was shot dead by armed police at the scene."

Mr Rowley also confirmed that police had searched six addresses - and made seven arrests. The inquiries in Birmingham, London and other parts of the country are continuing.