Home news Birmingham Christmas market steps up armed police presence

Birmingham Christmas market steps up armed police presence

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Police are increasing their armed presence at Birmingham’s Frankfurt Christmas market following a spate of terrorism attacks across Europe.West Midlands Police says it will deploy officers who are trained to recognise suspicious behaviour.The force says the measure is not a response to any specific threat, but a precaution following an attack at a Christmas market in Berlin in 2016.The Birmingham market, one of the UK’s biggest, starts on 16 November.Midlands Live: Birmingham woman guilty of aiding knife terror plotThe city council said the event would be smaller as a result of building work.Concrete barriers – aimed at stopping vehicles – are also being placed around the event site. In 2016, bollards were installed at locations along the market’s perimeter.

Supt Andy Parsons said the 2017 measures were “preventative” and the police presence would be “very visible”.”Obviously we are all aware of the tragic events that have taken place nationally and internationally,” he said.”We are constantly reviewing our response.”We have increased the amount of armed capability and will be deploying specially-trained officers who can respond to and recognise suspicious behaviour.”Really tragicBrigid Jones, deputy leader of the city council, said she hoped the measures would not change the market’s atmosphere.”We have millions of people who come to the market, not just from Birmingham but all over the country.”We are keen to make sure people aren’t put off by some of the really tragic events that have happened elsewhere.”We are doing our best, with the police, to minimise the risk and prevent these things from happening.”
Source: BBC Black Country