Posts Tagged ‘London attack’

Ivanka Trump expresses solidarity over London mosque attack

June 19, 2017


© AFP/File | Ivanka Trump with her father, US President Donald Trump
WASHINGTON (AFP) – Ivanka Trump on Monday expressed solidarity with worshippers attacked while leaving a London mosque, while her father — usually quick to condemn extremist attacks — was silent for the time being.”Sending love and prayers to the victims in #FinsburyPark London. We must stand united against hatred and extremism in all it’s ugly forms,” Ivanka, a top presidential advisor, tweeted.

President Trump has taken to Twitter during previous terror attacks to make the case for tighter restrictions on travel from predominantly Muslim countries.

He has also yet to offer public comments on the deaths of seven US sailors, who were killed during a collision between their US navy destroyer and a Philippine-flagged cargo ship.

In the London attack, a van ploughed into a crowd of Muslims near a mosque early on Monday, leaving one person dead and injuring 10 others in the second terror attack this month in the British capital.

Prime Minister Theresa May condemned the “sickening” incident, saying Britain’s determination to fight “terrorism, extremism and hatred… must be the same, whoever is responsible”.


London police pressed to explain ‘Jihadi Next Door’ case

June 6, 2017

Police have come under scrutiny for failing to apprehend a known extemist before commiting a deadly attack in central London. Political leaders have called on police to “answer the legitimate questions we all have.”

 Image result for london police, photos

Police name London Bridge attackers

Political leaders on Tuesday continued to question why authorities failed to apprehend Khuram Shazad Butt, one of the suspects in Saturday’s attack, after police announced he was known to security services and MI5, Britain’s domestic spy agency.

“Not unreasonably, these questions are being asked. I’m sure the police will look into what they knew, what they could have done, what they did do and if anything could have been done differently,” London Mayor Sadiq Khan told BBC.

Authorities did not say how Butt, a British citizen born in Pakistan, had come to the attention of law enforcement agents but local media reported that in 2016, Butt appeared in a Channel 4 documentary about British extremists entitled “The Jihadis Next Door.”

“What we need to do is make sure that we ask these questions and the police and the security services respond and answer the legitimate questions we all have,” Khan added.

Read more: British people ‘will not want to carry on as before’

Police identify suspects

London police on Monday identified the suspected attackers as 27-year-old Butt and Rachid Redouane, who claimed both Libyan and Moroccan nationality. Redouane was reportedly 30 years old, but he also went by the name Rachid Elkhdar, whose age was listed as 25.

Police said although Butt had been known by police, “there was no intelligence to suggest that this attack was being planned and the investigation had been prioritized accordingly.”

“I would urge anyone with information about these men, their movements in the days and hours before the attack and the places they frequented to come forward,” national counter-terrorism police chief Mark Rowley said in a statement.

The terrorist attack in central London on Saturday left seven people dead and dozens more wounded, with 36 people still being treated in hospitals as of Tuesday.

Read more: In Britain, tolerance and the ‘acceptance’ of extremism

Twelve of the people arrested as part of police investigations have been released wtihout charge, police added.

“At any one time MI5 and police are conducting around 500 active investigations, involving 3,000 subjects of interest,” Rowley said. “Additionally, there are around 20,000 individuals who are former subjects of interest, whose risk remains subject to review by MI5 and its partners.”

All those arrested in connection with the terror attack have now been released without charge 

Photo published for UPDATE: London Bridge Terror attack investigation

UPDATE: London Bridge Terror attack investigation

All of the people arrested on Sunday, 4 June, as part of this investigation have now been released without charge.

Calls for May to resign ahead of elections

The latest attack comes against the backdrop of parliamentary elections slated for Thursday. Prime Minister Theresa May has come under fire from her chief political opponent and some in the media for cuts she made to the police force during her time as home secretary, the British equivalent of interior minister.

Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn voiced support for those calling on May to resign because of her role in reducing police staffing, but he said the best remedy was to vote her out.

“There’s an election on Thursday, that’s the chance,” he said, citing an “appalling” cut in police staffing levels. “We’re calling for a restoration of police numbers, and there’s a call being made for her to go, because of what she’s done on the police numbers.”

Read: UK opposition leader calls on prime minister to quit

However, May shot back, saying Corbyn was not fit to safeguard Britain’s security at a time of heightened threat.

“We have given increased powers to the police to be able to deal with terrorists – powers which Jeremy Corbyn has boasted he has always opposed,” she said.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan, who is a member of the opposition Labour Party said on Monday: “It’s just a fact that, over the last seven years, we as a city have lost 600 million pounds ($774 million or 688 million euros) from our budgets. We have had to close police stations, sell police buildings, and we’ve lost thousands of police staff.”

London Trauer nach Anschlag vom 03.05.2017 (Imago/ZUMA Press/T. Akmen)Workers and residents left flowers at the site of the attack on and near London Bridge

Plots foiled

Police chief Rowley said Britain’s security services had foiled 18 plots since 2013, including five in the past two months.

Butt and Redouane were from the multi-ethnic Barking neighborhood of east London, where police raids began shortly after the attacks Saturday night.

Read: Police seize forensic material in London attack raids

The authorities are still working to identity the third attacker. All three suspects were shot dead in a hail of gunfire by police within minutes of the attack, which began when they drove a van into pedestrians on London Bridge.

The assault continued when the men, each armed with a knife, jumped out of the van and went on a stabbing spree in nearby bars and restaurants. Seven people were killed and dozens injured.

ls,bik/rc (AFP, AP, Reuters)


London attack: counter-terrorism officers make two more ‘significant arrests’ — Police ask for help from the public

March 24, 2017


© AFP | A flower left in tribute to the victims of the London March 22 terror attack placed next to the Palace of Westminster
LONDON (AFP) – Two more people have been arrested over Wednesday’s terror attack in London, police said on Friday, also giving the attacker’s birth name as Adrian Russell and appealing to the public for information about him.”We have made two further significant arrests overnight,” counter-terrorism commander Mark Rowley said, confirming that there are currently nine people in total in custody over the attack.

One woman arrested earlier was released on bail.

Police had earlier named the attacker as Khalid Masood but said he had been using “a number of aliases”.

Rowley said police carried out more than dozen searches, seizing 2,700 items including “massive amounts of computer data” and were attempting to work out whether others had “encouraged, supported or directed him”.

The Islamic State group claimed responsibility, saying the attacker was one of its “soldiers”.

“There might be people out there who did have concerns about Masood but did not feel comfortable for whatever reason in passing those concerns to us,” Rowley said, appealing for them to come forward.

The anti-terror police chief said “at least 50” people were injured when Masood ploughed through pedestrians on Westminster Bridge before knifing a policeman to death just inside the gates of Britain’s parliament and being shot dead by another officer.

A total of 31 people of 12 nationalities have been treated in hospital and one person has “life-threatening injuries”, Rowley said.

He also named a 75-year-old man who died of his injuries in hospital on Thursday as Leslie Rhodes from Streatham in south London.

His death brought the number of victims to four.


Islamic State group claims London attack

March 23, 2017


© AFP | Police block access to Westminster Bridge and the Houses of Parliament in London, on March 23, 2017
BEIRUT (AFP) – The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for an attack in London that killed three people, the Amaq propaganda agency linked to the jihadist organisation said on Thursday.”The perpetrator of yesterday’s attack in front of the British parliament was a soldier of the Islamic State and the operation was carried out in response to calls to target coalition countries,” Amaq said citing a “security source.”