Support 100 years of independent journalism.

  1. Politics
4 August 2016

Sadiq Khan steps up support for armed police after London mass stabbing

The mayor praised police doing "an incredibly difficult job". 

By Julia Rampen

The London mayor Sadiq Khan has urged Londoners to “remain calm and vigilant” after a mass stabbing in the city centre in which one woman died. 

He also pledged his “full support” to the police whom he praised for “doing an incredibly difficult job on our behalf”.

While the motive of the killer remained unknown at the time of his statement, the mayor is already in the process of stepping up the armed police presence in the capital. 

Just hours before the stabbing, on Wednesday 3 August, he announced that the London Metropolitan Police would deploy 600 more armed officers on the street.

As he acknowledged, it marks a shift from the tradition of unarmed policemen. 

Select and enter your email address Quick and essential guide to domestic and global politics from the New Statesman's politics team. A weekly newsletter helping you fit together the pieces of the global economic slowdown. The New Statesman’s global affairs newsletter, every Monday and Friday. The best of the New Statesman, delivered to your inbox every weekday morning. The New Statesman’s weekly environment email on the politics, business and culture of the climate and nature crises - in your inbox every Thursday. Our weekly culture newsletter – from books and art to pop culture and memes – sent every Friday. A weekly round-up of some of the best articles featured in the most recent issue of the New Statesman, sent each Saturday. A newsletter showcasing the finest writing from the ideas section and the NS archive, covering political ideas, philosophy, criticism and intellectual history - sent every Wednesday. Sign up to receive information regarding NS events, subscription offers & product updates.
  • Administration / Office
  • Arts and Culture
  • Board Member
  • Business / Corporate Services
  • Client / Customer Services
  • Communications
  • Construction, Works, Engineering
  • Education, Curriculum and Teaching
  • Environment, Conservation and NRM
  • Facility / Grounds Management and Maintenance
  • Finance Management
  • Health - Medical and Nursing Management
  • HR, Training and Organisational Development
  • Information and Communications Technology
  • Information Services, Statistics, Records, Archives
  • Infrastructure Management - Transport, Utilities
  • Legal Officers and Practitioners
  • Librarians and Library Management
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • OH&S, Risk Management
  • Operations Management
  • Planning, Policy, Strategy
  • Printing, Design, Publishing, Web
  • Projects, Programs and Advisors
  • Property, Assets and Fleet Management
  • Public Relations and Media
  • Purchasing and Procurement
  • Quality Management
  • Science and Technical Research and Development
  • Security and Law Enforcement
  • Service Delivery
  • Sport and Recreation
  • Travel, Accommodation, Tourism
  • Wellbeing, Community / Social Services
I consent to New Statesman Media Group collecting my details provided via this form in accordance with the Privacy Policy

Khan said: “We will see more armed officers on our streets, but there is no reason to be alarmed.”

The decision was taken after “recent deadly attacks in Europe”, he said: “It is important we are prepared should the unthinkable happen.”

In the case of the London stabbing, the killer attacked late on Wednesday night in the university district of Russell Square. One woman died at the scene, and five were injured.

The police refused to rule out terrorism, but also suggested mental health could be a factor. 

In the event, the public will have a chance to find out. The police did not kill the perpetrator – they tasered him. He has been arrested on suspicion of murder following his return to consciousness.