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Hundreds More Armed Police Officers Deployed on London’s Streets

LONDON (AP) — Metropolitan Police chief Bernard Hogan-Howe said Wednesday he’s increasing the number and the visibility of the officers “to protect the public from all manner of threats.”

“In some of our big iconic locations, we’ve already got armed patrols — if you look at Parliament, Downing Street — so it’s not entirely new,” he said. “I think people understand that where you are going to have people as enemies who’ve got guns, we’ve got to have guns.”

Police counter terrorism officers pose during a media opportunity in London, Wednesday, Aug. 3, 2016. London's police force is putting more armed officers on the streets 'to protect against the threat of terrorism.'' The increase in the number of officers follows attacks in France, Belgium and Germany. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

Police counter terrorism officers pose during a media opportunity in London, Wednesday, Aug. 3, 2016. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

Police counter terrorism officers pose during a media opportunity in London, Wednesday, Aug. 3, 2016. London's police force is putting more armed officers on the streets 'to protect against the threat of terrorism.'' The increase in the number of officers follows attacks in France, Belgium and Germany. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

London’s police force is putting more armed officers on the streets ‘to protect against the threat of terrorism.”  (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

Londoners are proud that most police do not carry guns, and the fundamental principle remains unchanged. Even with the changes, most of London’s 31,000 police officers will not be armed.

But the recent attacks underscore the challenge police face in responding to situations in which may be outgunned. Their deployment came after Hogan-Howe warned recently an attack in Britain was a case of “when, not if.”

Police counter terrorism officers hold their weapons during a media opportunity in London, Wednesday, Aug. 3, 2016. London's police force is putting more armed officers on the streets 'to protect against the threat of terrorism.'' The increase in the number of officers follows attacks in France, Belgium and Germany. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

The increase in the number of officers follows attacks in France, Belgium and Germany. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

Police counter terrorism officers pose during a media opportunity in London, Wednesday, Aug. 3, 2016. London's police force is putting more armed officers on the streets 'to protect against the threat of terrorism.'' The increase in the number of officers follows attacks in France, Belgium and Germany. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

600 extra officers are set to be deployed over the coming months (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

There are 5,639 authorized firearms officers in forces across England and Wales as of March 31. Some 600 officers are boosting the existing London force of 2,200 firearms officers in the coming months.

Authorities announced plans to increase the number of officers trained to carry guns after the attacks at a nightclub and in restaurants in Paris last year.

Police counter terrorism officers  pose during a media opportunity in London, Wednesday, Aug. 3, 2016. London's police force is putting more armed officers on the streets 'to protect against the threat of terrorism.'' The increase in the number of officers follows attacks in France, Belgium and Germany. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

Metropolitan Police chief Bernard Hogan-Howe said “I think people understand that where you are going to have people as enemies who’ve got guns, we’ve got to have guns.” (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

Police weapons are displayed in a police car during a media opportunity in London.  (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

Police weapons are displayed in a police car during a media opportunity in London. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

 

 

 

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