UK urged to review border security to keep out terrorists
Warning from former police chiefs comes amid inquiry into British link to Brussels and Paris jihadists
Britain has been urged to tighten its borders to keep out jihadi extremists travelling from Europe.
Several of the country's most senior security experts, including two former Scotland Yard commissioners, Sir Paul Stephenson and Lord Stevens, have signed an open letter to the government calling for a security review following the terror attacks in Paris and Brussels.
"We would support any new measures to tighten up procedures in order to make Britons safer in an ever more uncertain world," they wrote. "These could include better sharing of intelligence about potential extremists from other EU countries, and the maintenance of proportionate communications data provisions necessary to protect Britain from attack."
Sir Hugh Orde, the former president of the Association of Chief Police Officers, and Richard Walton, the former head of Counter Terrorism Command at the Metropolitan Police, have also signed the letter, which has been published in the Daily Telegraph.
Launching a Border Security campaign, the newspaper said: "America routinely screens suspicious travellers and refuses entry to anyone who is deemed a potential terror risk. However, Britain largely relies on intelligence provided by other European agencies which have recently proved to be severely lacking."
The letter comes as Western security agencies re-examine historic connections between Belgian and French jihadists and the UK, reports The Independent.
Five arrests in Birmingham and Gatwick last week are said to be related to the attacks in Paris and Brussels, while Mohamed Abrini, the "man in the hat" seen with the suicide bombers at Brussels airport last month, was said to be in Birmingham last summer.
Immigration minister James Brokenshire said the government had taken "huge strides" in tackling cross-border criminality and that the UK was at "the forefront of the global fight against terrorism and organised crime, wherever it originates".