British and Italian boxing teams caught up in Westminster attack as boxer says 'I can never unsee what I've just seen'

Jack de Menezes
The Independent
Two boxing teams were at the House of Commons when the Westminster attack happened: Getty
Two boxing teams were at the House of Commons when the Westminster attack happened: Getty

A number of amateur boxers were caught up in the Westminster terror attack on Wednesday after visiting the House of Commons ahead of the World Series of Boxing clash between the British Lionhearts and the Italia Thunder teams.

Four people have been confirmed to have died following Wednesday’s terror attack, during which a man drove through pedestrians on Westminster Bridge before crashing into the gates of the House of Commons. The man, who is among the fatalities, then stabbed a policeman before being shot by armed officers.

The Metropolitan Police confirmed on Thursday morning that the attacker, policeman and two members of the public have died, with 29 people still in hospital, seven of which are in a critical condition.

Seven arrests have been made after six police raids across London and Birmingham overnight, though the identity of the Westminster attacker is yet to be identified.

A number of reporters at the scene on Wednesday reported a large number of people in gym wear, with the Press Association’s Laura Harding noting the lobby of the Commons being “dominated by boxers in tracksuits”.

The Italia Thunder team were visiting the House of Commons when the attack unfolded, along with members of the Hammersmith Boxing Academy.

They took to Twitter to confirm they were safe from the attack, though British boxer Frazer Clarke was clearly shaken by the events that had unfolded.

“I can never unsee what I've just seen infront of my eyes at the House of Parliament in London ... God be with the police officer,” Clarke wrote on Twitter. “Currently inside the lobby at the Houses of Parliament terrible scenes ... God be with that police officer!! get me out of here ASAP.”

The Italia Thunder account added in Italian: “Not a good start [to] the adventure in London. Although at the time of the incident some of the #ItaliaThunder boxers were not far away, we want to reassure you that all are well.”

Sebastian Coe, the IAAF president and a member of the House of Lords, and Jackie Brock-Doyle, IAAF communications director, were also visiting Westminster at the time of the attack, and were among several hundred people that were forced to wait inside the buildings before being evacuated once it was safe to do so.

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