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London's Mayor Says 'We Will Never Let These Cowards Win,' Slams Trump Retort

London Mayor Sadiq Khan said the city would not be cowered by terrorism, after an attack on and near London Bridge left 7 dead and dozens injured.
London mayor Sadiq Khan speaks during a news conference Friday, Sept. 16, 2016, in Chicago. File.
London mayor Sadiq Khan speaks during a news conference Friday, Sept. 16, 2016, in Chicago. File.Tae-Gyun Kim / AP

London's mayor defiantly declared that the city is open after a terrorist attack in the heart of the British capital killed seven people and injured dozens.

"We are all shocked and angry today, but this is our city," Mayor Sadiq Khan said Sunday. "We will never let these cowards win, and we will never be cowed by terrorism."

A short while later, U.S. President Donald Trump took to Twitter to slam the mayor's response to the attack, posting, "7 dead and 48 wounded in terror attack and Mayor of London says 'there is no reason to be alarmed!'"

Responding to that, a spokesman for Khan later said in a statement: "The Mayor is busy working with the police, emergency services, and the government to coordinate the response to this horrific and cowardly terrorist attack and provide leadership and reassurance to Londoners and visitors to our city.

"He has more important things to do than respond to Donald Trump's ill-informed tweet that deliberately takes out of context his remarks urging Londoners not to be alarmed when they saw more police — including armed officers — on the streets."

Khan also said he does not believe general elections later in the week should be postponed or moved after the attacks.

"They want to stop us voting on Thursday in the general elections, and enjoying the democracy that we have," he said.

Seven people were killed and nearly 50 were injured in a terrorist attack involving a vehicle striking pedestrians on London Bridge and three attackers stabbing people in nearby Borough Market, authorities said. The three attackers were shot and killed by police.

Khan said he was "appalled and furious" at the attacks, but he said he believes London is one of the safest cities in the world. He said there would be extra police presence in London on Sunday.

"There aren’t words to describe the grief and anger that our city will be feeling today," Khan said.

An outpouring of support was expressed by leaders and others around Europe and across the globe.

Trump was more restrained Sunday night, saying at the annual fundraising gala for Ford's Theatre in Washington, D.C., that he had spoken with May and had promised the United States' "unwavering support."

"This bloodshed must end," Trump said. "This bloodshed will end."

French President Emmanuel Macron denounced the "abominable and cowardly" attack and said France will continue fighting "terrorism with all our strength alongside Britain and all other countries concerned." Macron in a statement said French citizens are among the victims.

Related: Londoners Ran, Hid And Fought Attackers Amid Rampage

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said in a statement that she learned of the attacks with "sadness and dismay" and said Germany would stand by Britain’s side against terrorism.

"Today, we are united beyond all borders in horror and sorrow, but also in determination," Merkel said.

Trump said Saturday night on Twitter that United States would help in any way necessary, and expressed his solidarity with London and the United Kingdom.

But the president lashed out at Khan early Sunday, criticizing his reaction to the attack.

"We must stop being politically correct and get down to the business of security for our people. If we don’t get smart it will only get worse," he posted on Twitter.

The pair have had a tumultuous past with Khan previously slamming Trump's "ignorant" view of Islam.

The U.S. State Department also condemned the attacks, saying in a statement, "Our hearts are with the families and loved ones of the victims. We wish a full and quick recovery to those injured in the attacks. All Americans stand in solidarity with the people of the United Kingdom."

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Twitter called the attacks "shocking & anguishing" and said his thoughts are with the families of those killed and prayers for the injured.

A host of celebrities and musicians, including Ariana Grande, who is scheduled to perform in Manchester on Sunday to benefit the victims of a May 22 suicide bombing outside a concert in that city, said their thoughts were with London.

Phil Helsel reported from Los Angeles.