Whitehall was briefly put under lockdown after a ‘suspicious package’ was found near Downing Street, prompting armed officers to flood the street.
Police were called to the street at 12:13pm today following reports of a ‘suspicious package’ along Whitehall.
The street meets the Houses of Parliament, the Cabinet Office and the prime minister’s office and residence at 10 Downing Street.
Photographs from the scene showed police cars in the middle of the road as an anti-government protest took place nearby. Video showed the street empty.
A witness tweeted: ‘There’s an incident at Downing Street and Whitehall has been closed off.’
‘Massive operation underway outside Downing Street,’ another passer-by posted at around 12:40pm. ‘The whole area being evacuated.’
The City of Westminster Police said: ‘Road closures are in place around Whitehall while officers assess a suspicious package,’ the force said.
‘We were called at 12:13hrs and remain in the area.’
The force added, however, at just shy of 12:50pm that the item has been ‘assessed as not suspicious’.
‘Road closures are being lifted,’ the Westminster branch of the Metropolitan Police added.
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