ANALYSIS
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The Critical State We are in

An armed police officer stands guard opposite the Houses of Parliament in central London on March 22, 2017, as an air ambulance waits in in Parliament Square, during an emergency incident.
British police shot a suspected attacker outside the Houses of Parliament in London on Wednesday after an officer was stabbed in what police said was a "terrorist" incident. / AFP PHOTO / DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS        (Photo credit should read DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP/Getty Images)
A female soldier stands outside the Royal Military Barracks, near the scene where a British soldier was killed in Woolwich, southeast London May 23, 2013.  The soldier was hacked to death on Wednesday by two men shouting Islamic slogans in a south London street, in what Prime Minister David Cameron said appeared to be a terrorist attack. REUTERS/Luke MacGregor   (BRITAIN - Tags: CRIME LAW MILITARY POLITICS SOCIETY) - RTXZXHG

Terror alert: Soldiers have been drafted in to guard iconic locations in London and free up police

UK’s terror alert has been elevated to ‘critical’ from ‘severe’, a decade highest level, after Monday’s (22 May) suicide bomb which killed 22 including children and injured 59 at the Manchester Arena. Britain’s armed forces have also been deployed to boost security across the country’s iconic buildings.

It was the country’s deadliest attack in 12 years after 22-year-old British-born Salman Abedi detonated an improvised explosive device (IED) which tore through crowds after an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester.

Soldierstaking part in ‘operation temperer’ have been deployed to maintain a visible presence at key locations like Westminster where a British-born man ploughed a car through pedestrians on the bridge in March. Other places being protected are; Buckingham Palace, Downing Street and embassies – as well as public concerts or sports events.

Graphics shows MI5's terror warning levels

Critical: Terror warning levels

Across the country, 3,800 soldiers will bolster Britain’s streets, freeing up police officers to carry out patrols and investigations. A critical threat level means an attack is expected imminently, as police try to hunt down or rule out any possible associates of the Manchester suicide bomber.

Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement but there appeared to be contradictions in its account of the operation. Prime Minister Theresa May saying on Tuesday (May 23) that the possibility of accomplices looks increasingly likely.

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