London police arrested a man brandishing a knife near Buckingham Palace last night after he allegedly threw suspected shotgun cartridges into the palace grounds. The arrest took place at around 7pm, just days before King Charles III‘s coronation. The event is set to attract global royalty and world leaders with a considerable security operation planned.
The Metropolitan Police carried out a controlled explosion on a suspicious bag that the man was carrying “as a precaution.”
As yet, it is not being treated as terrorism-related. The man was arrested on suspicion of possession of an offensive weapon following a search that revealed a knife.
Met Police chief superintendent Joseph McDonald confirmed that the man was taken into police custody. There have been no reports of gunshots or injuries to either law enforcement or the public. As inquiries continue, officers remain at the scene.
British media reported that neither 74 year old Charles nor his wife, 75 year old Queen Consort Camilla, were at the palace during the incident. Buckingham Palace officials have declined to comment.
The situation developed when the man approached the palace gates and threw items suspected to be shotgun cartridges into the grounds. The items were subsequently recovered and will undergo specialist examination.
The Mall, which leads up to Buckingham Palace, is currently closed to traffic in anticipation of Saturday’s coronation. The occasion marks the first British coronation in 70 years. Thousands of ceremonial troops will participate in a procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey, with large crowds expected.
The security operation, referred to as Operation Golden Orb, will be one of the most significant in recent memory. Measures will include rooftop snipers, undercover officers, airport-style scanners, sniffer dogs, and a no-fly zone over central London.
In related news, a group known as the Republic plans to mark the historic coronation of King Charles III with a protest.
Wearing yellow T-shirts that read “Abolish the monarchy,” this pressure group is advocating for the replacement of the traditional monarchy with an elected head of state.
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