NEWS
18/12/2017 14:40 GMT | Updated 19/12/2017 15:01 GMT

RAF Mildenhall Lockdown Lifted After Shots Fired During 'Significant Incident'

A man has been arrested.

UPDATE: Suffolk police have confirmed that a 44-year-old British man arrested in connection with the incident at RAF Mildenhall has been detained under section 136 of the Mental Health Act. 

A man has been arrested at an airbase in Suffolk after reportedly trying to ram the gates in a “significant incident” that led to shots being fired. 

American service personnel “fired shots” after the man tried to enter RAF Mildenhall, near Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk Police said in a statement on Monday.  

The force were called to the airbase at 1.40pm and apprehended a 44-year-old man who suffered “cuts and bruises” during the incident. No one else was injured. 

The man was initially arrested on suspicion of criminal trespass and remains in custody. 

Police confirmed the incident “is not being treated as terrorism”.

Suffolk police remain at the scene but said there is “no wider threat to the public or occupants on the base”.

The force added that it is not seeking anyone else.

The base, which is protected by Ministry of Defence police and US armed guards, was put into lockdown shortly after 1pm following reports of a “disturbance on base”.

PA Wire/PA Images
A man has been arrested after a 'significant incident' at RAF Mildenhall, in Suffolk, pictured above

The Ministry of Defence confirmed an incident “at the entry point” of RAF Mildenhall, but said police were leading inquiries.

The US embassy has so far declined to comment. 

A US Air Force spokeswoman confirmed the incident had been “contained” and that a suspect had been apprehended. 

Suffolk Police are urging members of the public to avoid the area around the airbase.

In a Facebook post, RAF Mildenall confirmed its “lockdown has been terminated” and operations are “returning to normal”.

“We’ve terminated our combined US-UK response to this incident and we are continuing to support local authorities in the ongoing investigation,” it said.

The 1,162-acre base, which houses about 3,100 US military and an additional 3,000 family members, is earmarked for closure after the US said it was going to move is operations from the base to Germany.

Mildenhall houses the 100th Air Refueling Wing and some special operations squadrons.

In 2016, a delivery driver was convicted of plotting to kill US troops based in England by staging road accidents with soldiers’ cars and then attacking them with knives and possibly a home-made bomb.

Prosecutors said Junead Khan had used his job to scout RAF Mildenhall and two other US bases while on carrying out deliveries.