UK police foil second London terror plot in a day

Author

29 April, 2017

British counter-terrorism police say they have thwarted an active plot with raids in London and south-eastern England, which saw one woman shot and six people arrested.

Speaking about the shot woman, a police spokesman said: "Due to her condition, she has not been arrested at this time and remains under police guard at hospital".

Police said the armed entry was necessary due to the nature of the intelligence they had received and involved officers firing CS gas.

All of them were detained on suspicion of the commission, preparation and instigation of terrorist acts.

Ms Sabanov said her neighbours were a "standard Muslim couple" of whom she "never suspected anything at all". "Yesterday was an extraordinary day in London", Deputy Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu said, after confirming six arrests overnight.

The British capital has been further on the alert since March 22 after a Daech militant known as Khalid Masood on board a 4-wheel auto crashed pedestrians on Westminster Bridge and the parliamentary estate five weeks ago.

Three separate addresses were searched as part of the operation, including the one in Harlesden Road.

"The police were dressed like normal fellas and then all of a sudden they put on balaclavas and they rushed at the woman".

Basu said the Willesden raid disrupted an ongoing plot, but did not elaborate.

Basu said security forces are constantly monitoring threats and "are making arrests on a near daily basis".

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Police said the raids weren't connected to an arrest by counterterrorism police near Parliament on Thursday afternoon.

"He remains in our custody having been arrested for Terrorism Act Offences and possession of offensive weapons", Basu said, "and there are two ongoing searches at addresses in London as part of that investigation".

The 27-year-old was arrested on terrorism charges after being surrounded by firearms officers who pinned him to the ground.

"Witnesses reported several shots were fired Thursday evening as London's Metropolitan police surrounded a property in northwest London", reporter Willem Marx tells NPR.

A 20-year-old woman, a 16-year-old boy, and a man and woman both aged 28 were also arrested, as well as a 43-year-old woman, who was arrested at another raid in Kent.

Although police said Masood had come to the attention of MI5 as a peripheral figure in an investigation into violent extremists, sources told Reuters he was probably a "lone wolf", self-radicalised by material on the internet.

"Her condition is serious but stable". "With the attack in Westminster on March 22 so fresh in people's minds, I would like to reassure everyone that across the country officers are working round the clock to identify those people who intend to commit acts of terror".

In the aftermath of the attack, armed police were deployed at every gate to Parliament and street patrols were increased.

Britain's top counterterrorism officer says 13 potential attacks have been foiled in the last four years.


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