Rural police fear being ‘sitting ducks’ in terror attack

LONDON (AP) — Rural police in Britain are warning they’d be “sitting ducks” in a terror attack because there aren’t enough trained firearms officers in isolated areas.

A police federation leader, John Apter, says firearms officers could be as far as 70 miles (110 kilometers) away in an emergency. Such areas include potential targets such as power plants and oil installations.

Britain’s government has announced that it will train more firearms officers in light of attacks in France and Belgium. But Apter told the BBC that unarmed officers are “saying to me that in a terrorist situation they would be sitting ducks.”

Britons are proud of the fundamental principle that police should routinely be unarmed. But the Paris attacks — in which gunmen fired into crowds — underscored the challenges police face.

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