The boy killers next door :Suicide bombers were UK born Muslims who "targetted their countrymen"
July 12, 2005
MIM: Now the British worst fears our confirmed they were targetted by their own countrymen. British born Muslims who went to the same schools they did, and one who played cricket a week before the attacks.
They were suicide bombers . . . and they were British
Four suicide bombers, at least three of them British, were responsible for the explosions that killed more than 50 people in London, senior security sources said last night.
The three were all thought to be of Pakistani ethnic origin and said by neighbours to have lived modest suburban lives in West Yorkshire.
One has yet to be identified, while the others were not known to police or the intelligence services as terrorist suspects.
One was the son of a fish and chip shop owner. Another was only 18 years old and was reported missing by his worried parents at 10pm on the day of the bombings.
Police said the bombers made a rendezvous somewhere outside London last Thursday morning, travelled together to King's Cross Thameslink station wearing large military-style rucksacks containing 10lb high-explosive bombs and split up to attack their assigned targets.
Three of the attackers were said to be from the Leeds area and were identified locally as British-born men.
The revelations realised the worst fears of police and the Muslim community. It confirmed the men as western Europe's first suicide bombers and the first Britons to attack their own countrymen with explosives since the ceasefire in Northern Ireland.
Early yesterday, police raided six addresses in West Yorkshire, discovered what is thought to be a bomb factory and arrested a man.
Three raids were on the homes of three of the four men police believe were responsible for the bombs in Tube trains near Liverpool Street, Edgware Road and King's Cross Underground stations at 8.50am last Thursday and on a bus in Tavistock Square almost an hour later.
Neighbours identified the bomber reported missing by his family as Hasib Hussain, of Holbeck, Leeds. Police say he died on the bus.
Detectives were examining the possibility that he either panicked or changed his mind over the suicide mission and carried his bomb on to the bus. It might have gone off accidentally or he could have set it off, perhaps after being challenged by passengers.
The Liverpool Street bomber is believed to have been Shehzad Tanweer, 22, the son of Mohammed Mumtaz Tanweer, a fish and chip shop owner in Beeston, Leeds.
Friends said Shehzad Tanweer was a keen cricketer and "a good Muslim" and expressed disbelief that he could have been involved in England's worst terrorist attack.
The disclosure that the bombs were the work of domestic rather than foreign extremists came from Peter Clarke, the Metropolitan Police deputy assistant commissioner.
He said: "We have identified CCTV footage showing the four men at King's Cross shortly before 8.30am.
"One, who set out from West Yorkshire was reported missing by his family shortly after 10pm on Thursday. We have now established that he was joined on his journey to London by three other men.
"We have since found personal documents bearing the names of three of those four men close to the seats of three of the explosions.
"As regards the man who was reported missing, some of his property was found on the Route 30 bus in Tavistock Square."
Survivors of that blast said they saw a man with olive skin searching agitatedly through a rucksack moments before a bomb went off.
Mr Clarke said: "Property in the name of a second man was found at the scene of the Liverpool Street bomb. In relation to a third man, property in his name was found at the scene of both the Liverpool Street and the Edgware Road bombs. We also have very strong forensic and other evidence that it is very likely one of the men from West Yorkshire died in the explosion at Liverpool Street."
Sources said the police were almost certain that scientific evidence would confirm that all the men seen on CCTV at King's Cross died in the separate blasts.
The investigation is likely to raise tension in multiracial communities, especially in West Yorkshire. Calling for calm, Assistant Commissioner Andy Hayman, of Scotland Yard, said: "No one should be in any doubt the work last Thursday is that of extremists and criminals. So, no one should smear or stigmatise any community with these acts."
Sir Ian said yesterday's operation, involving armed police and Army bomb disposal specialists, was intelligence-based and "directly connected" to last week's blasts.
A controlled explosion was carried out near Leeds Grand Mosque, houses were searched in nearby Dewsbury, and police evacuated Luton railway station, carrying out explosions to recover two cars - one containing explosives - possibly linked to the attacks.