Sunday, 8 December 2019

Vigils held for victims of London Bridge attack

London Mayor Sadiq Khan, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn at a vigil to honour the victims   AFP / DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS

LONDON: Tributes were paid to victims of the London Bridge terror attack, as the government said it was reviewing the early release from prison of dozens of convicted terrorists.

Jack Merritt, 25, and Saskia Jones, 23, were commemorated in a service at Guildhall Yard in the City of London. They were stabbed to death by convicted terrorist Usman Khan, 28, at a prisoner rehabilitation conference on Friday.

Mr Merritt’s family were at a service and minute’s silence in Cambridge, where the city’s mayor Gerri Bird led tributes outside the Guildhall.

Mr Merritt and Ms Jones were both University of Cambridge graduates, and had been attending an event for the university’s Learning Together programme – which focuses on prisoner rehabilitation – when they were attacked.

Peter Summers/Getty Images

The services came as more details emerged of how people at the conference tried to keep the attacker at bay with makeshift weapons.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan were among those attending the vigil in the capital, which also included a minute’s silence.

In an address, Mr Khan said London will never be cowed or intimated by terrorism.

He said: “The best way to defeat this hatred is not by turning on one another, but it’s by focussing on the values that bind us, to take hope from the heroism of ordinary Londoners and our emergency services who ran towards danger, risking their lives to help people they didn’t even know.”

A book of condolences is open at Guildhall Art Gallery and members of the public are invited to lay flowers outside nearby Mansion House.

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