Counter-Terrorism Policing (CT Policing) has significantly increased its international presence in the last two years, with many more staff currently deployed overseas working with local authorities to help protect British citizens from the global terror threat.
As UK schools break up for the summer holidays and the travel industry prepares for one of the busiest periods of the year, the UK’s most senior counter-terrorism officers are asking holidaymakers to play their part by watching a short video instructing them what to do in the unlikely event of an attack.
CT Policing – in association with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Home Office and the Travel Association ABTA – launched the four-minute film just over a year ago and, since then, more than seven million people have learned how to keep themselves and others safe should the worst happen.
ABTA has also translated the video into 15 different languages for use in multiple countries to improve awareness among the holiday representatives, hotel staff and security officers who look after millions of UK tourists every year.
The video was first created after 30 British people tragically lost their lives in the 2015 Sousse attack in Tunisia.
Since then, CT Policing’s international footprint has expanded significantly, with increases to the number of officers providing a range of security liaison and advice to other countries, ensuring they’re better prepared to keep people safe when overseas.
This is a ‘whole system approach’ to fighting the threat from global terrorism. By warning and informing citizens, training and advising industry and close liaison with domestic and international partners, each of these strands comes together to better protect the UK and its interests at home and abroad.
Everyone must remain alert
Chief Superintendent Nick Aldworth, national co-ordinator for Protect and Prepare, said: “The chances of being caught up in a terrorist incident are still low, but sadly we have seen atrocities take place in the UK and abroad, especially last year. That being so, it’s important everyone stays alert and knows what to do if the worst was to happen.”
Aldworth continued: “An important part of my job is deploying police officers and staff around the world to share the UK’s world-renowned security expertise and help better protect our citizens from harm. Now, we are asking the public to play an active part by taking the time to watch this video. We want people to think of this in the same way they do the safety film airlines show before take-off. They don’t expect anything bad to happen, but it’s a sensible safety precaution to show people what to do.”
Security Minister Ben Wallace MP stated: “Fortunately, the majority of us will never experience a terrorist attack while enjoying a holiday abroad and there’s no need to be alarmed. However, it’s important that we all remain vigilant to the threat.”
He added: “I urge all holidaymakers to take a moment before heading off on their travels to view the ‘Run, Hide, Tell’ advice, which could be life-saving should the worst happen. I also urge everyone to read the small print on their travel insurance to make sure they have the appropriate level of cover.”
Check the FCO’s travel advice
Minister for Counter-Terrorism, Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon, observed: “We work closely with our international partners to ensure that British holidaymakers are safe overseas. While the chances of becoming caught up in a terrorist event are extremely low, it’s important that people remain vigilant.”
Lord Ahmed urged: “Before going away, do take a moment to check the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s travel advice to make sure you’re aware of what’s going on in the country you’re going to. We encourage everyone to take sensible precautions while they’re abroad. If an incident occurs, remember the key advice to Run, Hide, Tell.”
Nikki White, director of destinations and sustainability at ABTA, concluded: “We recognise the importance of raising awareness and providing clear guidance for our members and their employees. We know that customers would look to those members of staff working in their hotels and resorts to take the lead and respond quickly to an emerging situation.”