‘Terrorists failed to drive our nations apart, shake belief in freedom & democracy’: UK PM

Paying tribute to 9/11 terror attack victims, UK PM Boris Johnson has said that the terrorists behind the horrifying September 11 attacks in the United States failed “to shake our belief in freedom and democracy”. Marking the 20th anniversary of the attacks, Johnson said that while the terror threat remained, people refused to live in permanent fear. In a recorded message, the UK PM said, “That we are coming together today – in sorrow but also in faith and resolve – demonstrates the failure of terrorism and the strength of the bonds between us”.

Around 2,977 people had died in the terror attacks, including 67 Britons. While recalling the attack, Johnson said that 20 years ago 11 September, 2001 became, in President Roosevelt’s words after Pearl Harbour, “a date which will live in infamy”. He even went on to say that recent events in Afghanistan had only strengthened people’s belief in freedom and democracy.

“On a crystal clear morning, terrorists attacked the United States with the simple goal of killing or maiming as many human beings as possible, and by inflicting such bloodshed in the world’s greatest democracy, they tried to destroy the faith of free peoples everywhere in the open societies which terrorists despise and which we cherish,” the PM said, adding that precisely because of the “openness and tolerance of the United States” almost every nationality and religion were among those murdered that day.

Further, Johnson added, “But while the terrorists imposed their burden of grief and suffering, and while the threat persists today, we can now say with the perspective of 20 years that they failed to shake our belief in freedom and democracy; they failed to drive our nations apart, or cause us to abandon our values, or to live in permanent fear”.

Today we remember the 2,977 people taken from us on September 11th 2001.

But while the terrorists imposed their burden of grief and suffering, we can now say with the perspective of 20 years that they failed to shake our belief in freedom and democracy. pic.twitter.com/BBuz9i08WZ — Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) September 11, 2021

The 9/11 attacks

The attacks, which were planned by Al-Qaeda from Afghanistan nearly 20 years ago, saw four US passenger jets seized. Al-Qaeda’s chief Osama bin Laden had plotted the attacks. The terrorist group launched two planes into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York. Another plane crashed into the Pentagon, just outside Washington DC, and a fourth plane crashed in a field in Pennsylvania after passengers fought back.

The 9/11 attacks are the most brutal in American history. It claimed lives of around 2,977 people belonging to 90 countries, while 19 suicide attackers also died in the attacks. In response, the US-led an invasion into Afghanistan in a bid to eradicate Al-Qaeda and hunt down Osama bin Laden. After 10-years, the United States was successful in assassinating the Al-Qaeda leader in Pakistan’s Abbottabad.

(Image: AP)