UK arrests 4 more linked to '05 transit bombings including widow of tube bomber- three arrests last month in ongoing investigations
May 9, 2007
British arrest 4 in connection with '05 blastshttp://www.usatoday.com/news/world/2007-05-09-london-arrests_N.htm LONDON — British police arrested four more people Wednesday in connection with the 2005 suicide bomb attacks on London's subway and buses that killed 52 passengers and injured 700 others.
Metropolitan Police said they arrested two men and a woman near Leeds in northern England and another man in Birmingham northwest of London.
They were arrested on suspicion of committing, preparing or instigating acts of terrorism, Metropolitan Police said in a statement. The suspects were not identified.
Today's arrests come after three men were charged last month with helping the four suicide bombers on July 7, 2005. They were the first people charged in connection with the bombings, and their arrests pointed to a wider conspiracy to carry out the worst peace-time attack on London.
Those three — Mohammed Shakil, 30, Waheed Ali, 23, and Sadeer Saleem, 26 — were accused of plotting with the bombers for almost eight months before the attacks on three subway trains and a bus during morning rush hour.FIND MORE STORIES IN: Osama bin Laden | Mohammed | Metropolitan | Tanweer | Mohammed Shakil
The bombers — Mohammed Sidique Khan, 30; Shehzad Tanweer, 22; Hasib Hussain, 18, and Germaine Lindsay, 19 — died with their victims in the blasts.
The transit bombings increasingly appear to be al Qaeda-inspired.
In a video played after he died, suicide bomber Khan praised al-Qaeda terrorist leader Osama bin Laden. And in a video played on the anniversary of the bombings last year, al-Qaeda deputy Ayman al-Zawahri praised Tanweer.
On April 30, it was revealed that Khan and Tanweer had contact with five other Britons of Pakistani backgrounds who were convicted of plotting al Qaeda-inspired terror attacks on London in 2004 with fertilizer bombs.
Peter Clarke, head of the Metropolitan Police anti-terror unit, said at the time that some of those sentenced had gone to Pakistan in 2003 to train at al-Qaeda terrorist camps, just as Khan and Tanweer had.
Metropolitan Police left open the door today that more arrests could be made in what it called in the statement "a painstaking investigation" that has been ongoing since the day of the bombings.
"The (police service) remains committed to discovering all we can about the events leading up to the July 7 attacks," the statement said.
The wife of 7 July bomber Mohammad Sidique Khan is among four people arrested in connection with the 2005 attacks, which killed 52 people.
Officers arrested Hasina Patel, 29, and two men in West Yorkshire and one man in Selly Oak, Birmingham. Seven addresses are being searched.
The four, aged between 22 and 34, are suspected of commissioning, preparing or instigating acts of terrorism.
They will be questioned at London's Paddington Green police station later.
Police searches are being carried out at one address in the Handsworth area of Birmingham and in Selly Oak police are guarding a student hall of residence believed to have been the location of one of the raids.
A police lorry took away a silver Peugeot 307 from the Victoria Hall block of flats on Grange Road.
West Midlands Police said the man arrested in Selly Oak was 22 years old.
In West Yorkshire five addresses are being searched - two houses in Dewsbury, two in Beeston and one in Batley.
Among those arrested was Khalid Khaliq, 34, from Tempest Road in Beeston, Leeds - the street where 7 July Aldgate Tube bomber Shehzad Tanweer lived.
Tanweer was one of four suicide bombers to mount the co-ordinated attacks in the capital nearly two years ago, which also injured more than 750 people.
Khan, 30, killed six people when he bombed a train near Edgware Road station.
A train travelling between King's Cross and Russell Square was also bombed, as was a double-decker bus in Tavistock Square.
The arrests on Wednesday morning followed an intelligence-led operation involving Scotland Yard's counter-terrorism command and units in West Yorkshire and the West Midlands.
Police said the inquiry remained a "painstaking investigation" into whether anyone knew what the bombers had been planning and who may have helped them.
Both West Midlands and West Yorkshire forces said they were keeping the affected local communities informed.
West Yorkshire Police said: "We would like to thank people for their understanding and support.
"Although we are legally limited in how much we can say, we will share as much information as we can with those living in the vicinity and with the wider community."
Officers said they did not believe any of the premises being searched in West Yorkshire contained anything which could be a threat to people in the area.
Last month the first people to be charged in connection with the bombings appeared at the Old Bailey in central London.
Mohammed Shakil, 30, Sadeer Saleem, 26, and Waheed Ali, 23, of Beeston, Leeds, are accused of conspiring with the four bombers to cause explosions.
The trio, who came before the court via a video link from prison, were remanded in custody until 8 June.