Armed Patrols Stepped Up Across Scotland
16 September 2017, 07:24
Armed police patrols are being stepped up across Scotland as the UK is placed on the highest terror alert following the London Underground train bombing.
Prime Minister Theresa May has raised the threat level to critical in the wake of the Parsons Green attack on Friday morning, meaning another attack is expected imminently.
Scottish police said they will be reviewing all "significant events" taking place over the coming days and will increase security where appropriate.
But the authorities have advised people not to be alarmed as they stressed there is no intelligence to point to any specific threat north of the border.
Assistant Chief Constable Bernard Higgins said: "With the threat level now at critical, Police Scotland will be increasing our operations to protect the people of Scotland, our businesses and public places.
"This will include increasing the number of armed police on patrol across the country. The public should expect to see armed officers on foot patrol at key locations and crowded places across the country.
"Please do not be alarmed by the presence of these armed officers. These measures are being taken to increase security at these sites, and to reassure residents, businesses, workers and visitors so they can go about their daily lives as normally as possible.
"Along with event organisers, we will also be reviewing all significant events taking place over the next few days and will increase the security footprint around those events where it is deemed appropriate.
"We have well-rehearsed plans to respond to major incidents and we will be continuing to work with our partners to address the current heightened threat."
He went on: "However, there is no intelligence to suggest there is any specific threat to Scotland but I would ask the public to remain alert and report anything suspicious."
The Scottish Government Resilience Room has been activated following the London attack and First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and key cabinet colleagues are said to have been fully briefed in connection with the increased threat level.
Holyrood officials have confirmed that extra security arrangements will be in place at the Scottish Parliament while the heightened threat level exists.
Ms Sturgeon said ministers' thoughts remain with those who sustained injuries in the attack.
She added: "While it is natural that any increase in the threat level is of concern, the public should be reassured that all appropriate precautionary measures are being implemented.
"My advice to the public is to remain vigilant and report any concerns to the police - but otherwise to go about daily life as normal."