London Update

Just following on from David, there is in fact a lot of blog activity. Tim Worstall is live blogging. John – shot from both sides – had to walk to work, Alex, the Yorskshire ranter can see things from his office window, is also following things closely etc, etc.

As I said in comments, there seem to have been six bombs, five in tube stations and one on a bus. The Police are saying that incidents were reported at the Aldgate station near the Liverpool Street railway terminal, Edgware Road and King’s Cross in north London, Old Street in the financial district, Tavistock Square, and the bus in Russell Square in central London, near the British Museum.

Blair has said he is going down to London in the afternoon, but that the Gleneagles meeting will continue. The atmosphere will obviously be one of solidarity. This is aimed at the UK, but it is also a symbolic message to the entire G8.

There is no serious speculation yet about who this might be. This piece by Reuter’s security correspondant Mark Trevelyan is a reasonable rundown on the things which immediately appear to stand out.

Financial markets have, understandably, taken it badly, although I don’t imagine this will prove to be long lasting.

The UK authorities are understandably being very careful about handling information about casualties. They don’t want panic, and they don’t want useless speculation.

They also want to be able to inform as many next of kin as possible before releasing data, which I think is admirable.

The total number of dead, mercifully, may not be very large. There are though a considerable number of very seriously wounded.

Updated 13:00 UK time

Neil Mackintosh at the Guardian Blog reports that:

“A packed House of Commons is hearing a statement from Charles Clarke, the Home Secretary. He expresses sympathy to friends and family of those who had died, and says four explosions are confirmed. One on a tube train between Aldgate and Liverpool Street, one on a bus, one in the tube at King?s Cross. Tube.

The underground will remain closed for today at least. There are no buses operating in central London, with decision to reopen to be made later today. People are strongly advised not to travel into central London, with many mainline train companies cancelling services or terminating before the capital.”

Updated 13:30 UK Time
The number of actual explosions seems to have been confirmed at 4. This does not mean there were no more devices which did not go off.

Britain’s Home Secretary Charles Clarke said there were three explosions in the subway and one on a bus. “We do not know who or what organizations are responsible for these terrible criminal acts,” Clarke said.

A summary of the impact of the explosions can be found here.

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About Edward Hugh

Edward 'the bonobo is a Catalan economist of British extraction. After being born, brought-up and educated in the United Kingdom, Edward subsequently settled in Barcelona where he has now lived for over 15 years. As a consequence Edward considers himself to be "Catalan by adoption". He has also to some extent been "adopted by Catalonia", since throughout the current economic crisis he has been a constant voice on TV, radio and in the press arguing in favor of the need for some kind of internal devaluation if Spain wants to stay inside the Euro. By inclination he is a macro economist, but his obsession with trying to understand the economic impact of demographic changes has often taken him far from home, off and away from the more tranquil and placid pastures of the dismal science, into the bracken and thicket of demography, anthropology, biology, sociology and systems theory. All of which has lead him to ask himself whether Thomas Wolfe was not in fact right when he asserted that the fact of the matter is "you can never go home again".