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July 07, 2005

Terror strikes London

From the UK Guardian:

Several eyewitnesses reported that a bus had been ripped apart by a bomb near Russell Square. Police confirmed the explosion. Union officials said they had received reports of two more bus explosions, but details were not immediately available. All London hospitals are on major incident alert.

Laura Matthews, a press officer at Universities UK, with offices in Tavistock Square, said there were bodies lying around the bus explosion, some without arms or legs. "Get people down here quickly," she sobbed. She thought a bomb had gone off and was trying to evacuate her office.

As I write, FoxNews is reporting continued explosions. An unconfirmed nine total, three in the London underground train system and four double-decker busses. The latest just minutes ago.

The UK's TimesOnline has the following timeline, so far (updated 8:25 CST, presumably 2:25pm London time):

0849 BST: First explosion occurs on the Metropolitan Line between Liverpool Street and Aldgate

0922: King's Cross and Edgware Road stations evacuated. Entire London Underground network evacuated soon after

0928: Metronet, a Tube maintenance company, reports that the explosions have been caused by a power surge

0933: Explosion reported at Edgware Road

0934: A police spokesman says there are "walking wounded" at Aldgate

0946: Explosions reported at King's Cross, Old Street and Russell Square Tube stations

0951: Scotland Yard declare a "major incident" on the London Underground. Overground trains are diverted from Moorgate to King's Cross

0952: A British Transport Police spokesman says that two Tube trains are stuck in tunnels near Edgware Road

0953: Rescue workers report several injuries at Edgware Road

1000: The National Grid reports that there has been no power surge that might have contributed to the incident

1013: Union officials report that there has been at least one explosive device on the London Underground

1016: Witnesses report an explosion on a bus at Russell Square

1019: Some mainline rail companies close lines in central London and terminate trains outside the capital. People are urged not to travel to London

1023: Scotland Yard says there are reports of an explosion at Moorgate

1035: Metropolitan Police confirm that there has been an explosion on a bus in Tavistock Square, near Russell Square in Central London

1120: The Army is patrolling the streets of Covent Garden

1130: Sir Ian Blair, the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, confirms that there have been six blasts in London and that traces of explosives have been found at at least one site

1138: A City of London Police spokeswoman confirms that two people have died at Aldgate

1139: A Buckingham Palace spokeswoman says that armed police and that Army have sealed off the area around the palace

1214: Tony Blair says that it is "reasonably clear" that the explosions were the result of terrorism

1216: Police have been called to Leicester Square Underground station, according to the London Ambulance Service

1224: Der Spiegel, a German news magazine, reports that responsibility for the attacks has been claimed by a group calling itself "Secret Organisation - al-Qaeda in Europe" in a message posted on an unnamed website popular with Islamic militants

1244: Police say that several people died in the bus bombing near Russell Square

1245: Police confirm "a number of fatalities" at Edgware Road Tube station

1256: The Home Secretary tells the House of Commons that "a number of terrorist attacks" have occurred in Central London, including at least four explosions: one at Edgware Road Tube station, one on the Tube between Aldgate and Liverpool Street stations, one between Russell Square and King's Cross stations and one on a bus at Tavistock Square 

1303: Brian Paddick, the deputy assistant commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, says that 150 people have been seriously injured. There was no specific warning about the attacks, he says

1341: President George W. Bush makes a televised statement to say that he has instructed the Department of Homeland Security to make sure that American are "extra vigilant"

Media outlets are scrambling for the latest and the most accurate news.

More as events unfold.

UPDATE: latest from Sky News:

A terror group linked to al Qaeda has claimed it carried out a series of terror attacks on London that have left a number of people dead and hundreds injured.

Two London hospital have reported a total of 185 wounded after a series of blasts hit locations across the city on buses and Tube stations.

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Ian Blair said there was evidence of explosives at at least one of the six sites.

Scotland Yard has denied reports they were warned of an attack by Israel minutes before the blasts.

Two people have been confirmed dead and at least 90 people injured in the explosion at Aldgate Station.

UPDATE (8:25amCST):

FoxNews is reporting 40 dead

Posted by Danny Carlton at July 7, 2005 05:20 AM

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