» Monday, June 5, 2006

Forest Gate

Asked if the Prime Minister had been given any briefings about the Forest Gate situation, the Prime Minister’s Official Spokesman (PMOS) said that there was a police investigation on going, and as with any other police investigation, it was right and proper that we allowed it to continue. It was also right and proper that we underlined our full appreciation of the work done by the police, and our support for them.

The PMOS said that in this situation, others could say whatever they liked, but the authorities had to be much more circumspect, and the PMOS said that he hoped people understood the reasons why.

Put that there were very good reasons to clarify things, given the tensions in the community, the PMOS said that when there was a live investigation going on, it was perfectly understandable why people were being circumspect, and it was right and proper that they should be.

Asked if the stance was roughly the same as the Metropolitan Police Anti Terrorism Chief’s which was it was better to be safe than sorry, the PMOS said that he had in the past talked about the very real nature of the threat that we faced. That threat remained as real today as in the past. Therefore, that was why the police had our full support in carrying out their duties. The PMOS was not going to get drawn on the individual case in any way.

Asked if there was any response to the 7/7 Bombing report, the PMOS said that we would study the report in detail. The PMOS said that firstly, nothing should take away from the overall impression that people had of how the emergency services worked on that day, which was of an individual level. On the systemic level, the emergency services had put into place the plans that had been carefully drawn up for such an eventuality, and nothing should take away from the very real heroism that individuals showed on that day, and the very real strength that the planning showed in terms of response. The PMOS asked if there were lessons that inevitably people could learn as they went from plans to reality? Of course, and those already in many ways had already been learnt. If people looked at the communications, they were part of that. In general, however, nothing should take away from the magnificent response of people on the day.

Asked why a former Scotland Yard detective said the police had to change their approach from the days of the IRA, the PMOS replied that people who were no longer in the job were free to say whatever they liked. However, those who were in the job had to get on and do the job, and that was what they were doing.

Briefing took place at 17:00 | Search for related news

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