MPs to be offered security guard protection when meeting

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MPs to be offered security guard protection when meeting
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MPs are to be offered security guards to watch over them when meeting the public under a security review prompted by the murder of Tory Sir David Amess.

They will be able to call on a ‘trained and accredited security operative’ when conducting constituency surgeries after Sir David, 69, was stabbed at one in his Southend West seat. 

MPs were warned in a joint letter by Home Secretary Priti Patel and Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle that their safety is at risk from a ‘small minority of hostile individuals’.

It came after a court heard 25-year-old Ali Harbi Ali purportedly plotted to kill an MP two years ago, first focusing on two others before the alleged terrorist murder of Sir David.

MPs to be offered security guard protection when meeting
MPs to be offered security guard protection when meeting
MPs to be offered security guard protection when meeting
They will be able to call on a ‘trained and accredited security operative’ when conducting constituency surgeries after Sir David, 69, was stabbed at one in his Southend West seat. Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle Home Secretary Priti Patel

The veteran Tory representative for Southend West was killed during a constituency surgery in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, five years after Labour’s Jo Cox was murdered in a similar scenario.

In a letter first reported by The Times, Sir Lindsay and Ms Patel wrote to MPs acknowledging they will be ‘rightly concerned about their own safety and security, and that of their staff’.

The letter added: ‘The work you carry out can put you at odds with a wide range of ideologies and views and a small minority of hostile individuals may be motivated by grievances which are difficult to detect and whose actions are hard to predict.’

They said a ‘trained and accredited security operative will be available to come to your constituency surgeries’.

This week Ms Patel told the Commons that intelligence officers had upgraded the threat level for MPs to ‘substantial’, meaning a fresh attack is deemed likely.

She said there was no ‘specific or imminent threat’ but it was understood MPs were being contacted over how their security arrangements may be altered.

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