Page last updated at 10:47 GMT, Thursday, 11 September 2008 11:47 UK

UK 'on guard' over terror - Brown

Gordon Brown says the UK has increased its ability to combat terrorism

Gordon Brown has said the government remains "permanently on guard" against the threat of terrorism in the UK.

Speaking on the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, the prime minister praised the police and security services for foiling terrorist plots against the UK.

But he said the UK must be "permanently on guard and permanently vigilant" against the threat from al-Qaeda.

He said the UK's military presence in Afghanistan was crucial in helping to stop attacks taking place in Britain.

US support

Mr Brown said he would speak to President Bush later on Thursday to convey the "support of the British people" on the anniversary of the 2001 attacks.

The police and security services must be commended for the number of plots they have had to deal with
Gordon Brown

And Mr Brown reaffirmed the government's determination to combat the continued terror threat in the UK.

He offered his support for Sir Ian Blair, the under-fire Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, saying the UK's top police officer had his full confidence.

"I think the Met have a very good record of preventing terrorist plots in the capital," he said.

"The police and security services must be commended for the number of plots they have had to deal with and the number of people they have had to follow."

The authorities were tracking hundreds of people who were considered potential threats to the country, he said.

Mr Brown also defended the government's anti-terror legislation, including the controversial 42 day pre-charge detention limit currently before Parliament.

Commenting on the continuing fight against the Taleban, Mr Brown said the UK must "maintain" its presence in the "front line" in Afghanistan to ensure terrorist threats were not exported back to "our streets".

Mr Brown, who said he would be meeting Pakistan's new President Asif Ali Zardari shortly, also said the "porousness" of the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan was a "problem for both countries".


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