Chief Constable Sir Willie Rae addressed a press conference relating to the incident at Glasgow Airport.
He told the assembled media:
Around 1515 hours this afternoon, Saturday 30 June 2007, a Jeep Cherokee drove into a front door at the check-in area of the terminal building.
The vehicle caught fire on impact. Emergency services were immediately in attendance and two men, from the vehicle were arrested at the scene. One was taken to the Royal Alexandra Hospital where he is presently detained suffering from severe burns and is in a critical condition. The other man has been detained in police custody.
The vehicle involved is still at the scene and will be subject to detailed forensic examination as part of the investigation. It has still to be verified if any other person was within the vehicle.
We can confirm that we believe the incident at Glasgow Airport is linked to the events in London yesterday. There are clear similarities and we can confirm this is being treated as a terrorist incident.
Following yesterday’s incidents in London, Strathclyde Police and all other forces throughout the country have increased their activities in relation to potential further incidents and have been in close liaison with the Metropolitan Police Counter Terrorism Unit, SO15. Deputy Assistant Commissioner Peter Clarke, who has responsibility for terrorism throughout the UK is currently enroute to Glasgow.
There was no intelligence prior to this incident that suggested that Scotland was going to be attacked, however in light of the events in London there has been close dialogue with officers from SO15 and increased police activity across all forces in the country. Following the incident at Glasgow Airport the threat level across the country has now been raised to critical. We have increased security at airports and other key locations across the Strathclyde area. While we have no intelligence of any intended further incidents of terrorism, we are asking the public to be very vigilant and report any suspicious activity to the police.
We continue to treat this as an ongoing incident. We would urge anyone who was in the area or has any information about this incident or those involved to come forward. In particular, between 20 – 30 people were standing outside of the terminal building at the time of the incident. I would urge these people to come forward as they may have seen something that could be relevant to this investigation. Anyone with information is asked to telephone the Incident Room which has been set up on telephone number 0800 056 0944.
Following admission of one of the men to the Royal Alexandra Hospital, Paisley, the Accident and Emergency unit has been closed.
As a result of the incident, one member of the public who was also injured at the scene of the incident was treated in hospital for an injury to her leg. At this stage we are not aware of any other casualties
We can confirm that the Chief Constable of Strathclyde Police, Sir Willie Rae, is leading this investigation, however given the apparent connections between the events in London and at Glasgow Airport, officers from SO15 of the Metropolitan Police are presently within Strathclyde and working closely with our officers on this matter.
This criminal act was felt by all members of our communities and particularly impacted on those who intended travelling abroad, on one of the busiest weeks of the holiday season. Additionally, many travellers were kept at the airport as a security measure. Public safety always comes first.
It is vitally important that communities support each other. The minority communities in the Strathclyde Police area and particularly the Glasgow minority community have intimated that they are very supportive of the police efforts to protect life.
While the majority of people in Scotland are supportive, there may be a small number of individuals who use this type of opportunity to harass and victimise members of our minority ethnic communities. This type of behaviour will not be tolerated and robustly dealt with.
The public support to this incident has been excellent and we would like to thank them, in particular the passengers and visitors at Glasgow airport, for their patience and understanding during what must have been a very stressful time.
Any person with information regarding this incident is asked to contact the Incident Room on telephone number 0800 056 0944 or their local police office. Alternatively telephone Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 where anonymity can be maintained.