UK campaign trail: London terror attack dominates discussions; Lib Dems won't support renationalisation plans

Jeremy Corbyn has said governments can act to make terrorist attacks like London Bridge less likely

UK campaign trail: London terror attack dominates discussions; Lib Dems won't support renationalisation plans

Jeremy Corbyn has said governments can act to make terrorist attacks like London Bridge less likely, as he warned that people cannot be kept safe “on the cheap”.

The UK Labour leader claimed that for too long “our country’s leaders have made the wrong calls on our security” and criticised cuts in public services.

As the political row over Friday’s attack intensified, Mr Corbyn used a speech in York to say cuts can lead to “missed chances to intervene in the lives of people who go on to commit absolutely inexcusable acts”.

“Take the probation service, part-privatised in 2014, resulting in disaster… The most serious cases stayed in a justice system badly undermined by austerity cuts,” he explained.

“A failure to recruit has left huge staffing shortfalls, with staff supervising more cases than ever expected, posing again a serious risk to our security. You can’t keep people safe on the cheap.”

Mr Corbyn said that “the war on terror has manifestly failed”, adding: “For far too long, our country’s leaders have made the wrong calls on our security.

“Their mistakes in no way absolve terrorists of blame for their murderous actions – the blame lies with the terrorists, their funders and recruiters.

But if we are to protect people, we must be honest about what threatens our security.

The attack has prompted the UK’s Ministry of Justice to review the licence conditions of every convicted terrorist released from prison, which Boris Johnson says is “probably about 74” people.

The British Prime Minister told BBC One’s the Andrew Marr Show that the other individuals were now “being properly invigilated to make sure there is no threat”.

Boris Johnson, with host Andrew Marr, appearing on the BBC1 current affairs programme
Boris Johnson, with host Andrew Marr, appearing on the BBC1 current affairs programme

Speaking on Sunday, he said:

I think it is ridiculous, I think it is repulsive, that individuals as dangerous as this man should be allowed out after serving only eight years and that’s why we are going to change the law.

Pushed on what action is being taken, Mr Johnson said he did not want to go into the “operational details”, but said: “I’m sure people can imagine what we’re doing to ensure that 74 other individuals who’ve been let out early on the basis of this Labour change in legislation, they are being properly invigilated to make sure there is no threat.”

Mr Johnson said Khan was under “various conditions”, adding: “He had mentors, he had restrictions on his mobile phone, he had restrictions on internet access.”

Menawhile, Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson condemned Boris Johnson’s actions in the aftermath of Friday’s London Bridge terror attack.

She accused the PM of trying to make Friday’s terror attack an election issue, adding his behaviour was “pretty distasteful”.

“This was an opportunity for Boris Johnson to be a statesman and yet again he has failed in that and has just shown why he is not fit for the job of Prime Minister,” she said.

Ms Swinson also took aim at Labour’s renationalisation plans, adding that in the event of a hung Parliament, the party’s leader Jo Swinson has said could not support it.

She described Jeremy Corbyn’s programme as “a distraction” and said the Labour Party had “not been clear about how they would pay for it”.

She added she does not believe renationalisation is “the way forward”.

Asked whether she would support Labour’s plans, Ms Swinson told BBC Radio 5 Live’s Pienaar’s Politics: “No, I think renationalisation is a distraction.

I don’t think it’s a way to deliver better public services and I think it’s taking us away from, actually, how do you make things better for people?

Pushed for further clarity on whether the Liberal Democrats would block the renationalisation of water, Ms Swinson said: “We don’t think that renationalisation is the way forward.”

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