Statement – International Terrorism

Posted on June 14th, 2011 in Parliamentary News

Keith Vaz (Leicester, East) (Lab): I welcome the Home Secretary’s statement and her commitment to continue to engage with communities. As events in Luton showed, it is extremely important to continue that process of engagement. She mentioned Mumbai, but security in major hotels and tourist places in such cities does not bear comparison with what is happening in London. Although I of course welcome everything the Government have done in training staff, it is vital that we continue to work with the private sector to ensure that it puts in place the necessary security arrangements in our major hotels and major tourist destinations, which will be targeted by terrorists, and we must prepare for that.

Jacqui Smith: I think my right hon. Friend is right to draw attention, as I did, to the need to learn from events such as those in Mumbai. I am glad that he welcomes the fact that, through the security advisers we fund, we have ensured that hotel operators are trained. In addition, of course, we provide advice, and we are developing the way in which we provide it—for example, ensuring that buildings are designed and built to be as safe as possible from potential terrorist attack. We will continue to do that and build on that work. I am sure my right hon. Friend shares my view that terrorists want us to garner obvious, difficult and cumbersome forms of security that prevent us from going about our daily lives. Our task is to make sure that everybody is able to live their daily lives as freely, but as securely, as possible.