U.K. Marks 10th Anniversary of London Bombings
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On Tuesday, London commemorated the 10th anniversary of the July 7, 2005 bombings that killed 52 people, which is the deadliest terrorist attack on British soil.
Exactly ten years ago, four British men inspired by al-Qaida’s ‘policy’ blew themselves up on three London subway trains and a bus, killing 52 commuters and injuring over 700.
One minute silence was held across London’s transport network at 11:30 am, while London Underground trains and buses came to a halt wherever possible. It was done to encourage encouraged to ‘walk together’ by getting off their Tube a little earlier to walk part of the way to work in memory of the victims.
Solemn ceremonies to commemorate the victims were held throughout London. The ceremonies started at the 7 July Memorial in London’s Hyde Park, which is devoted to the victims. Prime Minister David Cameron and London Mayor Boris Johnson walked through the memorial’s 52 pillars to lay wreaths, one per each pillar – one per each victim.
A major service also took place in St Paul’s Cathedral, which was attended by family members of the victims and those who were injured.
“Ten years on from the 7/7 London attacks, the threat from terrorism continues to be as real as it is deadly — the murder of 30 innocent Britons whilst holidaying in Tunisia is a brutal reminder of that fact,” said David Cameron. “But we will never be cowed by terrorism.”
Cameron referred to the Tunisian attack on 26 June in Sousse, when a gunman opened fire on tourists on a beach and in a hotel, and then was shot dead by the police. 38 people were killed, including 30 Britons. The terrorist attack is thus the deadliest terrorist attack on Britons since the London transport bombings 10 years ago.
Ever since the tragedy shook London on July 7, 2005, the U.K. strengthened its anti-terrorist defenses across the territory.
The U.K.’s most senior counter-terrorism police officer said that there have been up to 50 deadly terror attacks prevented over the decade since the 7 July bombings.
“Fifty is the order of the number of plots that have been confronted over the past decade,” said the Met’s Assistant Commissioner, Mark Rowley.
He added that all the plots had been different, but all could have resulted in fatalities.
However, the U.K. cannot afford to let its guard down or stop strengthening its efforts against terrorism for the reason that the possibility of a terrorist attack in the U.K. is highly likely since last August after ISIS made big gains in parts of Syria and Iraq.
Images via Anthony Devlin, AFP/Getty Images, Matt Dunham, AP, Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images
MYC Bulletin Writer Polina Tikhonova