Short speech to the House of Representatives by Prime Minister Mark Rutte commemorating the victims of the attack in London

Madam President,

Last Wednesday, exactly one year after the attack on Brussels Airport, another of our neighbours was struck at its very heart. London is grieving and we share in that grief. A cowardly act has cost the lives of innocent people and inflicted extensive injuries on many others. Westminster was by no means a random target. Not only is it the seat of one of the oldest democracies in the world, it is a place where people from all around the world come together. People of different nationalities were affected by the attack, from Great Britain, Germany, Italy and other European countries.

But for example also people from South Korea and Australia. Westminster epitomises everything extremists hate and try to destroy with attacks like these. Democracy and justice, openness and freedom, a world in which people come together and work together in peace. It was with these same values in mind that our own country went to the polls just two weeks ago. And it is precisely these values that are strengthened by such attacks, not weakened. Humanity is always stronger than hatred and violence.

Madam President, at times like these we take a stand. At times like these we are reminded of what is at stake. At times like these we offer our support and assistance to a country and a people with which we feel closely connected by the bonds of friendship, shared history and common traditions. And that is exactly the message I conveyed to Theresa May last week.

In response to the attack the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said, 'London is the greatest city in the world and we stand together in the face of those who seek to harm us and destroy our way of life.' Let our message today be that we stand together with the British people in defence of everything we hold dear. Our hearts and sympathies go out to the victims and their families.

Thank you.

Ministry responsible