LOCAL politicians and religious leaders have condemned Wednesday’s terror attacks in Westminster.
Four people were killed and 40 injured when a man drove a car along the pavement on Westminster Bridge, before stabbing police officer PC Keith Palmer, who later died.
The Houses of Parliament were put into lockdown as armed police searched the area. The attacker, named yesterday as Khalid Masood, was shot dead.
Both Dewsbury MP Paula Sherriff and Batley & Spen MP Tracy Brabin were inside the building at the time.
Ms Sherriff paid tribute to those who perished in the attack. She said: “I am truly devastated by the events of yesterday. My thoughts go out to the people who have died, their families and everyone caught up in the incident. PC Keith Palmer will be remembered as a hero, killed tragically when he was carrying out his duty to protect us all, our democracy and our freedom.”
The Labour MP, who said she hid in a cupboard as she feared it was a major attack on Parliament, admitted that the incident brought back memories of Jo Cox’s murder.
“It does bring it all back,” she said. “I was in a cafe with some friends and suddenly we heard loud screams. We thought there was a gunman in the cafe. Then a policeman with his face covered came in and began shouting.
“I got in a cupboard and my friends hid under a table. There were lots of rumours going round that it could be a bomb or a gunman. It brought it all back, what happened last year.”
But, she added: “We won’t let it beat us. We can’t let terrorists win or we might as well give up and go home.”
Batley and Spen MP Tracy Brabin said: “My thoughts are with those affected by yesterday’s serious incident at Parliament and on Westminster Bridge. My condolences go to the families who have lost loved ones, including PC Keith Palmer, whose life was lost whilst protecting those of us inside the Palace of Westminster.
“The emergency services are incredible, professional and deserving of our heartfelt thanks. From the paramedics, doctors and nurses who arrived on the scene to treat the injured, to the brave police who put themselves in harm’s way to protect us, we cannot thank them enough.
“One man demonstrated hate yesterday. He was outnumbered.
“Everyone else – from the emergency services, to civilians who sought to help the injured, to Minister Tobias Ellwood MP, who attempted to save the life of PC Palmer – demonstrated determination, compassion and love. Terrorism will never win.”
Local religious groups also came out in condemnation of the attack.
A spokesman for the Kirklees Imams and Mosques Advisory Board said: “The Muslim community of Kirklees is saddened to learn about the incident at Westminster.
“We condemn this vicious attack on innocent people, whoever it may be perpetrated by and for whatever motive.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their families and those affected.
“Also, our tributes go to the police the emergency services and the authorities who have handled the situation with sensitivity.
“We stand by all the decent citizens in this country against this attack ... at the centre of democracy.”