Members of the public who intervened to help stop a mass stabbing on London Bridge have been praised as “the best of us”.
Images and video from central London showed passers-by tackling a man on Friday afternoon during the latest terror attack to hit the capital.
Posts on social media suggested one bystander had been able to disarm the attacker.
Hailing the quick response of emergency workers during a televised statement, Boris Johnson also heaped praise on the people who intervened.
“I also want to pay tribute to the extraordinary bravery of those members of the public who physically intervened to protect the lives of others,” the prime minister said.
“For me, they represent the very best of our country and I thank them on behalf of all of our country.”
Sadiq Khan, the mayor of London, made similar comments. He said: “I would also like to thank members of the public who risked their own safety this afternoon. They are the best of us.”
He added: “What’s remarkable about the images we’ve seen is the breathtaking heroism of members of the public who literally ran towards danger, not knowing what confronted them.
“It’s another example of the bravery and heroism of ordinary Londoners running towards danger risking their own personal safety to try and save others.
“I want to say thank you to them on behalf of all Londoners.”
And Robert Jenrick, the communities secretary, said on Twitter: “Thank you to the emergency services and to the brave members of the public that responded to the attack at London Bridge. My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families.”
Sajid Javid, the chancellor, added: “Thank you to the brave members of the public and emergency services who responded to the London Bridge attack.”
Another Twitter user, whose profile identified them as a Devon and Cornwall Police control room supervisor, tweeted: “Ask yourself this. Could you, and would you run towards someone who’s stabbed people, and may well be wearing a suicide vest?
“I don’t think I can hand on heart say I would. Bravery isn’t the word.”
Police declared the attack a terrorist incident and said one man had been shot by officers. He died at the scene of the stabbing.
Cressida Dick, the Met commissioner, confirmed later in the evening that two people had died of their wounds and that three others were still being treated in hospital.
Register for free to continue reading
Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism
By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists
Already have an account? sign in