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Police officers and police staff on high alert following paris attacks

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National Policing Lead for Counter Terrorism, Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley has said “I wanted to make a short statement about some of the steps we are taking following the attacks in Paris last week and elsewhere.

The fight against violent extremism relies upon the active support of all communities

“The UK has been at a heightened level of threat from international terrorism for some years now. We have seen attacks in a number of countries, including France, Australia and Canada over the last few months, and in Belgium last night. We have also been working with security services to investigate a variety of threats and to disrupt a number of different plots to undertake attacks here. In 2014 there were 327 arrests for terrorist offences, that is a 32 % increase compared to the previous year.

“Last summer, the national threat level was raised to SEVERE. This means a terrorist attack here is highly likely. At that time we took a number of additional steps to protect communities and the public. This included, but was by no means limited to, additional armed patrols and more visible policing. We also held a counter-terrorism awareness week before Christmas to alert the public to the need for greater vigilance, and we offered specific advice where necessary.

“But, in light of the attacks in Paris last week, we have been reviewing, alongside our partners, our overall security posture. This is a further step in a process over a number of years of learning lessons from such events. For example, since the attack in Mumbai in 2008, we have enhanced our ability to respond effectively to a marauding terrorist attack by expanding our specialist firearms capability and improving the effectiveness of the response and joint working of all the emergency services. More generally we have continued to refine our plans and to enhance our capabilities to respond to a terrorist threat which has evolved and diversified.

“The global picture of terrorist activity does give us heightened concern about the risk to the Jewish community in the UK. We are seeing continuing anti-Semitic rhetoric from extremists and attacks on this community in France and elsewhere. In addition to our existing security measures, we are in dialogue with Jewish Community leaders about further actions that we will be taking, including more patrols in key areas.

“We remain alert to the vulnerabilities of other communities . Where we do have particular concerns, we make these known to those involved. For example, we continue to be alive to those who want to exploit the current situation and create fear in our Muslim communities, with whom we work closely, to offer our protection and reassurance.

“We are also considering what further measures we might put in place to enhance the security of police officers, given some of the deliberate targeting of the police we have seen in a number of countries across Europe and the world. Chief Constables across the country are reviewing how to strengthen the protection of their officers from such attacks. Our men and women on the frontline are used to confronting risk and danger and are well-trained in how to protect the public and themselves.

“The fight against violent extremism relies upon the active support of all communities, to look out for one another in their neighbourhoods and to continue to demonstrate a show of resolve that will eventually help to defy the poisonous ideology of extremists and deny them of opportunities to harm communities. We have been pleased and encouraged by the way that public has responded to appeals to report concerns or suspicious activity. The number of calls to the anti-terrorist and other hotlines has increased significantly over the last few months. This has made an important contribution to keeping the public safe.”

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URGENT APPEAL: TAKES 2 seconds to Share £100K Reward to find Missing Corrie Mckeague

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Corrie Mckeague has been missing since September

We need your help to share this appeal far and wide, it only takes 2 seconds to share.

Corrie’s mum faces a second Christmas without knowing what has happened to her son or where he is.

If you know what happened to Corrie you must come forward, if you are hiding information about what has happened to Corrie.

Someone out there must know what happened to missing Corrie Mckeaue. Please share this as far and wide as possible one person out there must know what happened or where Corrie is.

We are urging you to share this appeal as far and as wide as possible. We must know what happened to Corrie and ensure those who know are brought to justice.

His mum and brothers are now facing their second Christmas without Corrie, having met his newborn baby. He has simply vanished.

A £100K reward has been offered to find missing Airman Corrie Mckeaue who has been missing since September 2016

23-year-old Corrie Disappeared after a night out in Bury St Edmunds in September 2016.

Police have now finished searching a landfill site for his body and have found no trace of Corrie within the landfill.

Officers say they have “no further realistic search opportunities” at the moment.

Businessman Colin Davey has now doubled his £50K reward to £100K.

Corrie’s mother Nicola Urquhart shared the news of the reward on the ‘Find Corrie’ Facebook page.

She is ‘begging anyone with information’ to come forward.

“Today, Colin Davey has increased the reward for information that leads to Corrie being found to £100,000.

“I would fail miserably if I tried to find the words that describe how I feel about Colin’s generosity. We can never thank him enough.

“I would beg ANYONE who has information no matter how small they think it may be to come forward. There may be someone out there that thought that because the police were so sure Corrie was in the landfill that there information was not important so never came forward. Please do it now.

“If you have already left details with the police but feel you have not been taken seriously or ‘re contacted, please get back in touch with them and ask what they have done and if they need further information from you.

“Corrie is not in the landfill so something else has happened. It is impossible to evaporate one of these theories we have had from the start now must be what has happened. Please please help me to get as much information to the police as possible. Someone out there knows something.”

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Four Iraqis win damages against MoD following their treatment during invasion

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Four Iraqi Citizens have won a high court damages against the Ministry of Defence.

The case was relating to their ill treatment and unlawful detention during the invasion of Iraq.

It was heard that they were unlawfully imprisoned and ill-treated by British armed forces.

The Judge ruled that all four would be entitled to compensation under the Human Rights Act with one of those men being awarded more than £30K.

After Mr Justice Leggatt’s ruling, lawyers said the result of the four test cases could form the basis of settlement of more than 600 unresolved claims in what is known as the Iraqi Civilian Litigation.

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‘Trauma Teddies’ police officers give our teddies to children they meet at incidents they attend

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A scheme where police officers give a cuddly toy to young children they meet during their daily patrols has been expanded across the North East.

The ‘Trauma Teddies’ scheme was launched in September but was started as a pilot operation that just covered part of Newcastle.

It involved knitted teddy bears being stored in patrol cars of response officers so that they can hand it to young children they meet when responding to incidents.

They could be handed to children who were involved in a road traffic collision or to a young child who had gone missing.

In the last month, the scheme has received an overwhelming response from local communities with more than a hundred teddies donated across the force.

Now the decision has been made to expand the pilot forcewide so patrol cars in Gateshead, Sunderland, North Tyneside and Northumberland will carry ‘Trauma Teddies’.

Chief Inspector Clare Langley has overseen the implementation of the scheme in Northern Area Command and said they could be a vital tool to help comfort young children.

She said: “This is a really fantastic scheme that has already had a number of success stories in Newcastle during the pilot.

“We have had an overwhelming response from the public and more than a hundred knitted teddies have been handed in by members of the public.

“It made sense to expand this scheme across the force as in the short time we have been running it we have found there is clearly an appetite to keep it going.

“Many of the children we come into contact with are scared, frightened and have never had any contact with the police before.

“Our officers are fantastic at comforting these young children but giving a child a teddy bear can be the thing that really builds a connection with them.”

Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner, Dame Vera Baird QC, said: “I very much welcome this initiative to Northumbria. It recognises the effect a traumatic experience can have on a child and such a simple gesture is a step towards making a child’s experience less painful.

“Our officers sometimes have to attend devastating road traffic accidents or are called out to domestic incidents where a child has witnessed frightening scenes which result in seeing someone they know, and even love,
being taken away.

“A teddy won’t fix things but if it can help officers distract a child from what’s happening and offer them some comfort. I’m very thankful to everyone who has donated these bears – they will make a difference.”

Trauma Teddies were first introduced in Australia in a bid to comfort young children whose families had been left homeless by forest fires.

It was then adopted by the Red Cross to comfort young refugees before arriving in the UK when it was adopted by some police forces.

Victims First Northumbria suggested the scheme in the region and collected the first batch of teddies as well as producing a number of colouring books to hand out.

One of the early success stories includes a four-year-old boy who went missing and thought he was in trouble when he returned to see police at his house.

He was inconsolable until police handed him a teddy at which point his face “lit up” and he realised police weren’t just there to tell him off.

And last week a two-year-old boy was handed a ‘Trauma Teddy’ to comfort him after his mother was involved in an incident in North Shields and had to be spoken to by police.

Chief Inspector Langley said the teddies were really important to help show children at a young age that they could speak to their local police.

She added: “A lot of the work we do in schools and in our local communities is all about breaking down those barriers between children and police.

“We don’t want kids growing up with a negative view of the police and an opinion that our only role is to lock them up when they’ve done something wrong.

“This is about showing them that we are people to and that they can come to us whenever they have any concerns.”

Rachel Hardman, of Victims First Northumbria, said: “The Trauma Teddies appeal has been imperative in providing support to children across Northumbria.

“At VFN, we are keen to work with our partners to provide an excellent service to victims across Northumbria.

“Once a child receives a teddy and a safety colouring book, VFN receive a notification and we make contact with that family to provide support.

“This means that once the initial incident has been taken care of by our partners the Police, VFN can continue to provide independent support and coordinate a range of needs the family or indeed the child may have.

“We are really pleased and grateful for all the donations that have been received and are confident that the appeal will continue to be a success.”

Anyone who wants to help, or donate a bear, can get in touch by emailing either [email protected] or drop them off at their local station.

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