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Britain elevates security level to severe raises fears of attack

British Prime Mininster at today's press conference on Downing Street
British Prime Mininster at today's press conference on Downing Street
Photo by WPA Pool/Getty Images

If you’re heading across the pond soon, you might want to rethink that trip. Britain just raised its terrorist threat level to severe, which is the fourth highest of five levels. The news spread quickly today, August 29 about the elevation in security following a somber public address by Prime Minister David Cameron, during today's publicized press conference from Downing Street in London that called for greatly heightened security.

News sources were fast to jump on the story, with the New York Times reporting, that the Prime Minister expressed alarm by the suspected presence of hundreds of British jihadis among Sunni militants in Syria and Iraq. The assessment of the terrorism threat indicates that new laws would be introduced to counter what Prime Minister David Cameron called “a greater threat to our security than we have seen before.”

The Times called the tone of the warnings reminders of the days after July 7, 2005, when four suicide bombers killed 52 travelers on the London transit system. The show of concern, moreover, seemed intended to bolster the government’s case for contentious new legislation to control

A security level assessment is conducted by a panel of security experts and officials, independent of government officials. There are constant reports on TV and online news sites that many European nations fear their citizenry who have joined the Sunni militant Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, will return home trained and pose a major threat.

Thus far the United States has not issued a travel advisory about travel to England, but common sense might indicate that it’s not such a good idea at this time.