They also didn’t like having security barriers to prevent Muslim terrorists from ramming cars into the building because they think they are “ugly.” Muslim terrorist Khalid Masood marauded through the access point stabbing police officer Keith Palmer to death. Theterrorist finally was shot byDefense Secretary Michael Fallon’s personal guardsafter making it around 20 yards on to the estate. With the UK’s Terror Alert at ‘severe,’ 90% of cops are still unarmed.
UK Daily Mail ‘Some Members and staff also noted that the presence of armed guards outside the main visitor entrances did not create a welcoming atmosphere.’ Lord Hain, who was Leader of the House of Commons between 2003 and 2005, said there had long been a cultural resistance to bolstering security at parliament.
The complaints, in response to a survey by the House authorities in 2014, lay bare the extent of resistance among politicians to modernizing security on the estate before the bloody terror attack this week. Armed officers are not currently stationed round the clock at the Carriage Gates, the main entrance that looks out on to Parliament Square.
Lib Dem MP Tom Brake, a member of the ruling Commons Commission, suggested today that officers manning the gates should always be armed or accompanied more closely by armed colleagues. ‘These officers are the most vulnerable … and the arrangements have got to be scrutinized to see if in future we need to have different arrangements surrounding them.’
He said there was already a project under way to improve security at the Carriage Gates.’There is work under way, with work expected to be completed by the end of the year,’ he told Sky News, while refusing to give details. ‘Regrettably this work had not already taken place.’
Pressure is mounting for Parliament Square to be permanently closed to traffic and bollards installed on Westminster Bridge in the wake of the horrific terror attack. Scotland Yard’s anti-terror chief Mark Rowley insisted today that Parliament’s security arrangements were ‘proportionate’ – but confirmed they would be reviewed.
Meanwhile, concerns have been raised that Masood was able to drive at speed down the pavement of Westminster Bridge, mowing down dozens of people, before entering the parliamentary estate and stabbing a policeman to death.
Critics have claimed the main entrance to the Palace of Westminster had long been a weak spot on the estate because the imposing iron gates are left open for most of the day.