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Friday, 14 September, 2001, 21:18 GMT 22:18 UK
Britain unites in show of grief
The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh leaving St Paul's
The Queen joined mourners at the service
The Queen has joined thousands of people at St Paul's Cathedral in London for a remembrance service honouring the victims of the US terror attacks.

The service was held after people across the UK observed a three-minute silence at 1100BST, as part of a Europe-wide show of solidarity involving 43 countries.

More than 500 Britons are expected to be confirmed dead among more than 5,000 thought to have died in Tuesday's strikes.

Prime Minister Tony Blair, The Duke of Edinburgh, Prince of Wales, and the American ambassador also attended the St Paul's service.

For the flower of democracy to flourish, it must grow in the soil of justice

Dr George Carey
Archbishop of Canterbury
About 2,000 people entered St Paul's for the service, but police say up to 30,000, including many Americans, gathered outside the cathedral.

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr George Carey, told the congregation that a "senseless evil had been perpetrated against America and the free world".

But he added: "For the flower of democracy to flourish, it must grow in the soil of justice. Yes, those responsible for such barbaric acts must be held to account. But we must be guided by higher goals than mere revenge."

On Friday evening, London's theatres responded to the US terror attacks by switching off their lights in a simultaneous mark of respect for the victims.

Parts of the West End were cloaked in darkness during the five-minute tribute, which began at 2015BST.

Silent tribute

Earlier, people gathered at many locations throughout the UK observed a period of silence in honour of the dead.

Hundreds stood with their heads bowed outside the American Embassy in London as Big Ben struck 11.

MPs and peers also stood in silence in Parliament, recalled for an emergency debate on the atrocities.

US Ambassador Hon William Farish
The US Ambassador read from the Bible during the service
Crowds fell silent at a memorial service at City Hall in Belfast. There were also religious services in Londonderry, Armagh and Portadown.

At Cathays Park in Cardiff, Welsh Assembly First Minister Rhodri Morgan led members in observing the silent tribute.

In Edinburgh, traffic came to a standstill as crowds gathered on Princes Street to observe the silence that was marked across Scotland.

In Lockerbie, where 270 died when Pan Am Flight 103 came down in December 1988, the town hall bell tolled to signal the start of the silence.

In Liverpool, a Mass honouring the dead and injured was held at the Metropolitan Cathedral of Christ the King, led by Archbishop Patrick Kelly of Liverpool.

'Hideous' atrocities

Earlier, Mr Blair told members the US terror was a tragedy of "epoch-making proportions", and pledged to bring to account the perpetrators of the "hideous" atrocities.

Home Secretary David Blunkett said the attack highlighted the need for global cooperation in tackling terrorism and said he would look again at the issue of identity cards for UK citizens.

At least 100 Britons have been confirmed dead but the number is expected to rise to the "middle hundreds", the foreign secretary has said.

US President Bush George Bush declared Friday a day of national mourning.

Margaret and Denis Thatcher
Former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher also attended
The BBC broadcast a special live programme, presented by David Dimbleby, on BBC One and all BBC radio and television networks marked the silence.

Days after the attack, thousands of travellers remain stranded in the UK with most flights to the US still grounded.

US airports are gradually reopening but there are still few transatlantic flights likely to leave the UK on Friday.

The first commercial US-bound plane has left Europe, but non-American aircraft have yet to receive permission to land in the US.

The families of many of the Britons confirmed to have died have been contacted by Scotland Yard's casualty bureau.

None of the confirmed casualties has yet been named.

Useful numbers:

  • Foreign Office/Scotland Yard: 020 7008 0000
  • US Embassy in London: 0207 499 9000
  • Police terrorism hotline (for businesses): 0800 789 321

    The BBC's Nicholas Witchell
    "An entire continent offering solidarity to another across the Atlantic"
    William Farish, US Ambassador in London
    "It has been an amazing outpouring"
    See also:

    14 Sep 01 | UK
    Twin's telephone warning
    13 Sep 01 | UK
    'They told us we were safe'
    14 Sep 01 | Business
    Transatlantic flights resume
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