Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

'Be Vigilant as an Attack Is Highly Likely' Britons Warned Following Death of Bin Laden

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

'Be Vigilant as an Attack Is Highly Likely' Britons Warned Following Death of Bin Laden

Article excerpt

Byline: Ella Pickover

AN ATTACK on the United Kingdom is highly likely and could occur without warning at any time, Britain's most senior police officer warned last night.

Sir Paul Stephenson said it was vital that communities remained vigilant and urged members of the public to "trust their instincts" and report "any suspicious behaviour which may be terrorist-related".

"Vigilance should be our watchword," the Metropolitan Police Commissioner said in London.

In his first speech since returning to work after surgery, Sir Paul said the "severe" threat from international terrorism was "not a bureaucratic description, but rather a factual assessment of the reality of the threat we face".

"To be blunt it means that an attack is highly likely and could occur without warning at any time.

"As Government, the police and the security service assess the impact and consequences of the death of Osama bin Laden, it is clear that there can be no let up in our vigilance."

Meanwhile, the President of the United States, Barack Obama, announced last night that he has decided not to release death photos of bin Laden.

Releasing graphic images of the terrorist leader's corpse after his shooting in a US raid on his compound in Pakistan could have dispelled doubts that he is indeed dead. The worry, though, was that it would feed anti-American sentiment.

The president made his decision as the special forces involved in the daring raid arrived in the United States for debriefing, and US officials began to comb through the intelligence trove of computer files, flash drives, DVDs and documents that the commandos hauled out of the terrorist's hideaway.

Mr Obama spoke before visiting New York City to mark the end to one of history's most intense manhunts and to remember anew the victims of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks at the hands of bin Laden's organisation. He invited former President George W. Bush, who once famously said he wanted bin Laden "dead or alive", to join him, but he declined. In London and Washington, questions raged about whether Pakistan was complicit in protecting the mastermind of those attack. …

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