BBC to screen London terror drama
New film set to question the country's capacity to deal with a "dirty bomb".
10:59 28 July 2004
A new drama produced by the BBC is to question the UK's ability to respond to a major terrorist attack.
The film, "Dirty War", is due to be shown on BBC1 in the autumn, and will focus on the aftermath of a "dirty bomb" attack on Liverpool Street Station in London.
In the story, around 200 people are killed in the blast - putting the fictional incident more on the scale of the Madrid train bombing than of the September 11 attacks.
The film will follow the efforts of a number of characters from the emergency services, including a female Muslim police officer, in responding to the crisis.
"There will be people who feel it's an important and necessary film that highlights a real issue, and there'll be people who see it as irresponsible scare-mongering", Dan Percival, the co-writer and director, told the Guardian newspaper.
Denying that the film will provide a blueprint for terrorists to actually carry out attacks, Mr Percival argued, "We didn't set out to invent this story - we went out and researched it ... It's designed to pose very difficult questions about our level of preparedness, not just in terms of equipment planning but also of us as citizens."
The film follows on from a BBC "Panorama" programme, screened in May, which presented a dramatised account of the news response to a terrorist attack in London.
The Home Office described the May programme as "irresponsible and alarmist."