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The UK Terror Threat Has Been Lowered From “Severe” To “Substantial”

The UK Terror Threat Has Been Lowered From “Severe” To “Substantial”

The threat level was last raised in November 2020 following a series of shootings in Vienna (PA)

2 min read

The terror threat level in the UK has been lowered to “substantial”, three months after it was raised to “severe” as a “precautionary measure”.

In a written statement to the Commons, home secretary Priti Patel said the Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre (JTAC) had taken the decision to lower the threat level on 4 Februrary due to a “significant reduction in the momentum of attacks in Europe since those seen between September and November 2020”.

She continued: “However, the UK national threat level is kept under constant review and is subject to change at any time.”

“Terrorism remains one of the most direct and immediate risks to our National Security. 

“SUBSTANTIAL continues to indicate a high level of threat; and an attack on the UK is still likely. The public should continue to remain vigilant and report any concerns to the Police.”

The threat level system consists of five levels which indicate the likelihood that a terror-related incident could occur on the UK mainland: low, moderate, substantial, severe and critical. The terror threat for Northern Ireland is classified separately and remains at “severe”. 

Since its introduction in the wake of the 2005 London bombings, the UK level has never gone below “substantial”. 

The last change to the “severe” threat level was announced in November 2020 following a series of shootings in Vienna in which four civilians were killed.

“The Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre has changed the UK terror threat level from substantial to severe,” Patel wrote on Twitter on 3 November 2020.

“This is a precautionary measure and is not based on any specific threat.

“The public should continue to remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity to the police.”

The level was most recently raised to “critical” status in 2017 in the wake of the Manchester Arena bombing and the Parsons Green train bombing.

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