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Metropolitan Police Service Press conference 14.30, Sunday 10 July

Present: Deputy Chief Constable British Transport Police Andy Trotter, Metropolitan Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Brian Paddick and Metropolitan Police Sergeant Gary Locker from the Emergency Procedures Unit

London is open for business again, that's the message from police to residents and visitors as the working week gets underway tomorrow.

Andy Trotter from British Transport Police said police forces and security services are working together to keep London safe and that the city had defeated terrorists in the past and would continue to do so. 

He said forensic work is continuing at the four sites and includes fingertip searches for clues in the hunt for the murderers who killed at least 49 people and injured 700. 

Search teams are continuing to look for bodies of victims which may have been trapped in the wreckage of the train at Russell Square, though a number of bodies have now been removed.  Recovery experts are facing hot and dangerous conditions, which is making the work painstaking and slow.

Gary Locker said the officers working on recovery teams were a specially selected and trained group of volunteers and would carry out their task with dignity and respect to the victims and their families. 

Police will be able to name the victims when the coroner has completed the process for formal identification and this was still underway.

Andy Trotter said the teams are working as quickly as they can, but there will be some necessary disruption to traffic around the crime scene and some parts of the Underground remain shut although most lines have since re-opened fully or in most sections.  People should check the real time travel updates on the Transport for London site at www.tfl.gov.uk

He urged people not to leave packages or luggage unattended, which would cause unnecessary alerts and alarms.

Brian Paddick said police were continuing to provide support and advice through a family assistance centre and had assigned 59 family liaison officers to families where their relatives were thought to have died, are critically ill or are missing and are known to have been in the area of the blasts.  The Foreign and Commonwealth Office is making arrangements for families of foreign nationals caught in the explosions to come to London and family liaison co-ordinators will meet them off their flights.  Co-ordinators are also in place at the mortuary where the bodies of the victims have been taken.

Brian Paddick said all the communities in London had come under attack on Thursday and police were working with communities leaders and had received enormous support.  Police are in touch with community advisors, the Muslim Safety Forum, the Muslim Council for Britain, the Community Security Trust and the Metropolitan Police Authority, which has a statutory responsibility for working to ensure the safety of all London's communities. 

Brian Paddick said all faith groups had condemned the attacks, but there had been a slight increase in hate crimes that are religiously or racially motivated.  One person had been seriously injured.  He said police take hate crime very seriously and it would not be tolerated.

1,700 calls have been made to the Met's Anti-Terrorist Hotline.  Brian Paddick said calls to the confidential helpline had provided a great deal of help and some leads for police.  He urged others to call in if they had information that may be of use.  The Anti-Terrorist Hotline number is 0800 789 321.

The Met is also appealing for video, photographic or mobile phone footage from anywhere around the scenes of Thursday's explosions on the underground at Aldgate Station, Edgware Road Station, Russell Square and from the bus explosion at Tavistock Square.  Please email any images to images@met.police.uk with contact details in case police need to follow up any material they receive.  People without access to email should phone the hotline number given above.

Three people have been arrested at Heathrow Airport early today under the Terrorism Act 2000.  It is pure speculation at this stage to draw any linkages with the attacks in London.

The Mayor has arranged for a Book of Remembrance to be placed at City Hall from 1pm tomorrow afternoon (Monday 11 July). Details for City Hall at www.london.gov.uk

   Bulletin 0000000214 10 July 2005