Police investigate 'suspicious package' containing white powder sent to Amber Rudd

Armed officers deployed inside the Palace of Westminster where police say that they are “investigating an incident” in the Houses of Parliament. (PA Images)

Counter-terror police were called to the Parliamentary Estate this afternoon after a ‘suspicious package’ containing white powder was sent to Amber Rudd.

Officers later confirmed that the substance addressed to the home secretary was harmless.

A Met Police spokesman said: ‘At approximately 11.36 hours on Tuesday, 13 February, police were informed of a suspicious package that had been delivered to an office within the Palace of Westminster. Police are at the scene and dealing.

‘The letter contained a white powder which is currently being assessed by specialists. The office remains closed at this time, but the rest of the Palace of Westminster is open.’

The substance was sent to home secretary Amber Rudd (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth/file)

‘Detectives from the Met’s Counter Terrorism Command have been informed and are investigating.’

A House of Commons spokesman confirmed earlier that officers were ‘investigating an incident’.

One unnamed officer in Speaker’s Court said that specialist colleagues were examining a package left in the Palace of Westminster.

They said: “We haven’t been told much, but a package has been left.

“Specialist officers have just arrived to examine it.

“It won’t be anything to worry about.”

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A message was put out on the annunciators which are displayed on TV screens around Parliament, reading: ‘Incident in the House of Commons being dealt with by the Metropolitan Police, do not be alarmed.’

There was ‘heavy police activity around ministerial corridor’, according to Westminster Correspondent Harry Cole.

A House of Commons spokesman said the investigation was ongoing but the building was not in lockdown, nor were any security alerts displayed on the annunciators around the Palace of Westminster.

No extra officers were visible at the main entrance at Carriage Gates.