British security alert shuts major London road

16th May 2011, Comments 0 comments

British police on Monday closed off a major road in London which leads to Buckingham Palace because of a security alert.

The area around The Mall, a broad boulevard leading to the London residence of Queen Elizabeth II, was closed off from around 04:20 am (0320 GMT), police said.

"There's an ongoing security alert in that area," said a spokeswoman from London's Metropolitan Police, confirming the road was shut.

It came a day before the queen begins the first visit by a British monarch to the Republic of Ireland since it won independence.

The four-day visit is surrounded by a massive security operation amid threats from dissident republicans opposed to any British presence on Irish soil.

Just days later, US President Barack Obama will visit Ireland before going on to visit Britain.

© 2011 AFP

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