Police Reveals Picture, Background of Westminster Attacker
- Author: Leroy Wright Apr 04, 2017,
Apr 04, 2017, 21:30
LONDON - British police said Friday they made two new "significant arrests" in their investigation into the radicalization of a middle-aged attacker accused of carrying out a deadly knife and vehicle rampage in the British capital.
The manager of a hotel where the London attacker stayed the night before he plowed his 4x4 into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge and then stabbed a police officer at Parliament says he seemed unusually outgoing and mentioned details about his family, including having a sick father. He added that police "have seized 2,700 items from our searches including massive of amounts of computer data".
On Thursday, ISIS sneered: "The attacker yesterday in front of the British Parliament in London was a soldier of the Islamic State executing the operation in response to calls to target citizens of coalition nations".
Police chief Rowley said police were "looking at his history" and appealed to the public to come forward with any information about him.
British-born Islamic convert Khalid Masood (52) was shot dead after killing four people including a policemen in a rampage on Wednesday when he rammed his auto into pedestrians and tried to force his way into the parliament building in central London.
A total of 31 people of 12 nationalities have been treated in hospital and one person has "life-threatening injuries", Rowley said.
Britain's top anti-terrorism officer, Mark Rowley, said police had nine people in custody after the attack on Wednesday which killed five people including the assailant. The victim needed cosmetic surgery following the savage attack.
This is an undated photo released by the Metropolitan Police of Khalid Masood.
Naveed Mirza, a Muslim student, said he had received "overwhelming" support since the attack described by police as "Islamist-related terrorism".
Members of the emergency services take an injured person away on a stretcher after an incident on Westminster Bridge in London.
Amongst those remembered are PC Keith Palmer, mother Aysha Frade and American tourist Kurt Cochran.
Seven of those arrested have now been released from police custody and face no further action - two women aged 21 and 26 and four men aged 23, 26, 27 and 28 who were all arrested at addresses in Birmingham.
UK Prime Minister Theresa May said that while Masood had been under surveillance in the past, he was a "peripheral figure" who was not suspected of plotting any specific attacks.
"In standing here, we represent the three Abrahamic faith communities, all equally committed to a peaceful future", Welby said after observing a minute's silence outside Westminster Abbey.
Twenty-eight of the 40 injured in the attack remain in hospital, with six in critical condition.