World leaders react to London Bridge attacks

World Today

World leaders react to London Bridge attacks

Concern, condemnation and pledges of cooperation from around the globe after the London Bridge attacks.  World capitals and international organizations are expressing solidarity with London, and outrage over the violent attack.

CGTN’s Jim Spellman reports about what leaders are saying about the incident.

As expected after an incident like this world leaders are expressing sympathy and solidarity with the U.K. and the victims of the attacks.

Germany, India, Australia, Pakistan and many other countries all condemn the attack.  The news is resonating especially strongly in countries that have faced their own major attacks in recent years.

In the United States President Trump took to Twitter to make several comments.  He used the attacks to push for his proposed travel ban that would temporarily halt people from several Muslim majority countries from entering the United States and tweeted: “We must stop being politically correct and get down to the business of security for our people. If we don’t get smart it will only get worse.”

Trump offered assistant to the U.K. in the investigation and response to the attack.

We don’t know yet if this attack was linked to a terrorist group, but ISIS and Al Qaeda know that it has gotten harder for them to operate in the West and hatch large scale, complex plots like we saw on September 11th 2001, so they have shifted tactics towards these sorts of attacks that require little planning or money.

The terrorists just need a vehicle and some knives and they don’t even have to communicate with operatives overseas which make it harder to track them.

So, authorities can continue to harden targets, add security check points at airports and special events but security forces struggle to have enough resources to track everyone on their radar and there will always be so-called soft targets out there.

So we are now hearing the British Prime Minister describe this as a new trend stemming from what she calls “the single evil ideology of Islamist extremism that preaches hatred, sows division and promotes sectarianism.”
She says new efforts are required to fight back against this ideology especially on the internet where it is so often spread.

May went on to say there is simply too much tolerance for extremism in the U.K.

That’s a new, tougher approach to this problem, but it won’t be easy to stop that sort of message from spreading.

Social media platforms like Twitter have cracked down on ISIL and Al Qaeda linked accounts but it’s still easy to find magazines online full of hateful ideology and detailed instructions for launching attacks.

CGTN’s Wang Guan spoke to Douglas Smith, former Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security about the London Bridge attack and combating terrorism. Smith is now a Managing Partner for Kent Strategies.