Port security not increased

DESPITE reports of an Al Qaeda agent entering Britain through Felixstowe port before the London bombings it was revealed today that security levels there have not been increased.

DESPITE reports of an Al Qaeda agent entering Britain through Felixstowe port before the London bombings it was revealed today that security levels there have not been increased.

Paul Davey, corporate affairs manager at the port which has spent tens of millions of pounds improving security, said: "We have been contacted and advised by government officials that the level has not increased and there is no extra threat to operations at ports.

However, portworkers have been urged to stick to all rules concerning security, and to be on their guard and be vigilant while at work.

Mr Davey added: "Our staff are constantly aware of the security rules and procedures and are asked to be vigilant at all times."

Meanwhile, a company has claimed it breached security of key British ports trading with America "too easily" during a special checking exercise.

Hart International did the exercise on behalf of clients concerned over security and alleged restricted areas were accessed on foot and by sending people in the back of a lorry.

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However, the firm has not revealed which ports were targeted.

Officials at Felixstowe have been mystified at national reports that Special Branch kept tabs on an Al Qaeda operative said to be on a terrorist "watch list" who allegedly entered the country through the port two weeks before the tube and bus bombings.

Home Office officials are currently carrying out a security review at six British ports - again no details of which have been released - with the aim to improve co-ordination of security measures.

At Felixstowe, more CCTV cameras, extra steel, fencing tighter controls on terminal areas, more security guards and port police, plus ID cards for everyone working at the complex, have been part of a huge package of measures.

It has now been confirmed that Ipswich man Richard Gray was killed in the London attack, along with Richard Ellery, also from the town.

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