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British born Muslim terrorists "who looked completely normal" have "changed terrorist picture in Britain forever "

Explosives for "several more bombs" found in house - police warn more attacks on the way
July 13, 2005

Jul 13 2005

By Mark Mcgivern


FOUR suicide bombers travelled by train to bring death and devastation to London, it was revealed yesterday.

Three of the men, all British-born Muslims from well-off families, travelled down from the Leeds area and linked up with the fourth at Luton, police believe.

And more killers, possibly co-ordinated by an al-Qaeda bombmaster, could be at large in Britain ready for a second wave of attacks.

The four were seen on CCTV around 8.30am last Thursday, casually dressed and carrying large rucksacks, leaving a Thameslink train at King's Cross.

Twenty minutes later, three of them detonated their deadly devices on the tube network.

The last minutes of the bombers were pieced together as police raided a number of homes in the Leeds area and arrested a Pakistani man in his early 20s. It is understood they found a large stock of explosives at one of the homes.

They also carried out a series of controlled explosions on a car at Luton station car park - in which they had found a stash of explosives - and were examining another car seized in the south of England.

Meanwhile, the House of Commons was sealed off for more than an hour in a security alert last night.

Anti-terrorist squad officers were last night desperately trying to track down the bombers' contacts and a number of other cars they are believed to have rented for the operation.

The cache of explosives found in Leeds is understood to have been enough for several more deadly devices.

A senior security source said: 'There is evidence that more bombs were being planned.'

It emerged yesterday that police were tipped off to the identities of at least three of the bombers by their concerned loved ones.

The three, aged between 19 and 30, were reported missing by their families in the Leeds area in the hours after the explosions.

They all called the casualty hotline to try to get news of their husbands and sons One of those missing is believed to be the father of a five-month-old baby.

Twelve hours after the blasts,the family of the 19-year-old, from Leeds, called the Police Casualty Bureau to say their son had gone to London for the day with some friends but had not returned.

The family gave police the names of the friends he had gone to meet.

A driving licence and credit cards belonging to the 19-year-old have since been found in the wreckage of the number 30 bus that blew up in Tavistock Square.

Police have also found personal documents belonging to the other two Yorkshire men at the sites of the Aldgate and Edgware Road explosions. One of the men was 22 and the other 30.

The fourth man caught on the King's Cross video has not been accounted for.

But police said they were confident that his remains were still in the wreckage of the Piccadilly Line train that exploded between King's Cross and Russell Square. The recovery of bodies and evidence from that train has proved a lengthy job.

A police source who has seen the CCTV footage of the men, taken at about 8.30am on Thursday, said: 'All of the men look completely normal.

'They are dressed in casual clothes with big rucksacks on their backs and look for all the world like four men who are off on a backpacking holiday, instead of four mass murderers on the last leg of their mission.'

Peter Clarke, head of the Metropolitan Police's anti-terrorist branch, said last night: 'We are conducting a complex investigation which is moving at great speed.

'We are searching a number of properties, including the home addresses of three of the four men who are of interest to us.'

Detectives only discovered the men had rented a number of vehicles when a hire company worker arrived at one of the houses as they were searching it. He told police that a rental car had not been returned and he was looking for it.

That car is thought to have been rented by a cricket-mad 24-year-old called Shahzad Tanweer, the son of a wealthy businessman who formerly worked as a community policeman Tanweer - known as 'Kaki' - has not been seen since last Thursday's horror.

His best friend, Mohammed Answar, 19, was horrified to learn that he was being investigated.

He said there was no way his friend, who recently completed a sports science degree, could have been involved in the London atrocities. 'It's impossible. It's not in his nature to do something like this,' he said.

'He is the type of guy who would condemn things like that.' The Yorkshire raids began at around 6.30am yesterday.

As they unfolded, roads were sealed off and hundreds of residents were evacuated.

Bomb disposal experts carried out at least one controlled explosion and a variety items were taken away for further examination.

One of two addresses raided in Dewsbury was the home of a retired schoolteacher and had been under surveillance for three days.

Officers wearing white overalls sealed off the neat bungalow of Farida Patel, a widow, who lives with her son Arshad, 28, his wife Khadija, and their baby.

Mrs Patel also has a married daughter, Hasina, 27, who was believed to be living with her husband at a second address raided by police in the town.

A silver R-reg Ford Escort was loaded on to an orange wagon at Mrs Patel's house during the afternoon and driven away. A source at West Yorkshire Police said: 'The driver of the car will not be returning - and he has not been arrested.'

Unconfirmed reports also linked Hasib Hussain,18, from Leeds,to the raids.He was reported missing by his family after going to London last week Yesterday, his family's home was raided by police and last night a white tent had been erected outside.

Police sealed off both ends of the road as the search continued for clues.

Up to 600 people were evacuated from the Hyde Park Road area of Leeds as police prepared to move in on another of their target homes. Nearly two hours later, soldiers blew open the front door.

Inspector Miles Himsworth said armed officers had been used as a precaution in case anyone was inside but it was empty. He said: 'Here, we are searching the premises for explosives and bits and pieces, such as computers.'

A senior anti-terrorist squad spokesman at Scotland Yard said last night: 'These terrible events have revealed a new dimension of terrorism in Britain, one which we had all been fearing.

'From now on, we must be extra vigilant because we genuinely fear that more bombs may be on the way and this atrocity has changed the terrorist picture in Britain forever.'

Police are checking the arrival and departure records of all flights into Britain during the last three months to see if any known terrorists may have slipped in from abroad. One theory is that an experienced al-Qaeda operative travelled to Britain to back up the suicide bombers.

A security services spokesman said: 'We are certain the bombers were not acting alone.

'Where are the plotters and the planners? They may have already fled the country but they may be lying low, ready to launch a second wave in the next weeks or months.'

Tony Blair and other ministers were being given 'minute by minute' briefings on the operation yesterday.

Anti-terrorist chief Clarke said: 'The investigation quite early led us to have concerns about the movements and activities of four men, three of whom come from the West Yorkshire area.

'We are trying to establish their movements in the run-up to last week's attacks and specifically if they all died in the explosions.

'We have since found personal documents bearing the names of three of these four men close to the scenes of three of the explosions.'

Police were considering whether to release the video footage of the men from cameras at King's Cross today.

They were also scrutinising CCTV footage from 2500 cameras around the blast sites.

And they are analysing 2000phone calls to a hot line and 115,000 calls to police.

At Luton, a total of five controlled explosions were carried out as bomb disposal experts and forensic teams searched the rental car.

The explosives found in the car were detonated separately A second car was later recovered by police and is being forensically examined in nearby Leighton Buzzard.

Police refused to say exactly where it was recovered.

A Bedfordshire Police spokesman said the vehicle was not found at the train station but it was also being linked to the terrorist attacks.

He said they had received a tip-off from the Metropolitan Police and had acted to recover the vehicle


AT 6.30am, police teams pounce on two addresses in Leeds - Stratford Street and Colenso Mount - and on another two locations in Dewsbury, south of the city - Lees Holm and Thornhill Park avenue


SHORTLY after 6.30am, police raid 51 Colwyn Road, in Leeds' Beeston area and just a few minutes' walk from Stratford Street. Police tape also seals off a number of cars parked nearby, including two Mercedes and a red Volkswagen car parked outside the house


People evacuated and six roads are cordoned off around Alexandra Road. Controlled explosion later carried out


Rail station evacuated before controlled explosions on a car


Bomb suspect's family 'shattered'
Shehzad Tanweer's uncle, Bashir Ahmed The family may have to move from the area, said Bashir Ahmed
The uncle of one of the suspected London suicide bombers said his family had been "left shattered" by the news.

Bashir Ahmed, 65, said the family of Shehzad Tanweer, who recently studied religion in Pakistan, could not accept he was capable of the bombings.

"It wasn't him. It must have been forces behind him," he said.

Police are now focusing on finding those who masterminded the suspected suicide attacks that killed at least 52 people in London last Thursday.

Second strike

When asked how he felt when police told them his nephew had not been a victim but may have perpetrated the bombings Mr Ahmed broke down, saying: "We have lost everything we have."

Mr Ahmed said his nephew - who he last saw the day before the bombings - went to Pakistan for two months earlier this year to study religion.

Detectives believe at least three British men of Pakistani descent died carrying out the first attacks of their kind in the UK.

The fourth bomber has yet to be identified by police.

It appears our youth have been involved in last week's horrific bombings - nothing in Islam can ever justify the evil actions of the bombers
Sir Iqbal Sacranie, Muslim Council of Britain
Analysis: Worst fears true Q&A: Hunt for bombers

One man was arrested in West Yorkshire where three of the suspects, yet to be officially named, were from.

Terrorism experts say the men may have been guided by a "controlling hand".

Police believe two of the suspects died in the blasts at Aldgate/Liverpool Street and Edgware Road Tube stations, while a third died on the Number 30 bus at Tavistock Square. The fate of the fourth bomber has yet to be confirmed.

They are also trying to find the source of explosives found on Tuesday in a raid on a property in Leeds and in a car parked at Luton Central railway station.

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Ian Blair has said another bomb attack is "likely" and there are fears that a second suicide bomb gang may be preparing to strike.

The attacks in the morning rush-hour last Thursday also injured more than 700 people.

Scotland Yard on Wednesday named six more victims of the bombs, bringing the total of identified bodies to 11.

Police sources told the BBC they had not recovered any timing devices from the bomb scenes, possibly indicating that detonation was by hand.

WEST YORKSHIRE RAIDS 1. 0630 BST: Two houses raided in Beeston 2. Two houses raided at same time in Dewsbury 3. One house raided in Holbeck 4. 1320 BST: Controlled explosion in Burley
Suspects: Key facts Cars linked to attacks Viewpoint: Bombers ready to die

They are also investigating the theory that the bus bomb may initially have been targeted at the Northern Line, which on Thursday morning had been closed because of a defective train.

A relative of one of the West Yorkshire suspects was arrested and taken to London for questioning.

It emerged that relatives of one of the men - Hasib Hussain - had reported him missing last Thursday evening.

Police sources told the BBC that the 19-year-old was on the Number 30 bus.

One of the police raids - in the Beeston area - was on the home of 22-year-old Shehzad Tanweer, who has not been seen for a few days.

One local resident described him as "a nice lad".

"He liked to play football, he liked to play cricket. I'm shocked."

Shehzad Tanweer's birth certificate (Copyright Ross Parry) Shehzad Tanweer, 22, was born in Bradford to Pakistani-born parents

A third man was named by newspapers as 30 year old Mohammed Sadique Khan.

On Monday night, police had viewed CCTV footage of the four suspects together at London King's Cross last Thursday.

All had rucksacks and were seen 20 minutes before the three Tube bombs started going off at 0851 BST. The bus bomb went off at 0947 BST.

Three of the men had travelled to Luton from Leeds by car, before catching a Thameslink train to London. They were joined at Luton by a fourth man, believed to have driven to the Bedfordshire town.

Evidence found at each London location

Tuesday's police raids, which began at 0630 BST, centred on two properties in Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, and four in Leeds.

Explosives were also found in a car at Luton railway station and a number of controlled explosions were carried out. The car has now been taken away for further examination.

BOMB MANHUNT London: Forensic work ongoing at blast sites Leeds area: Six houses searched, controlled explosion at one, one arrest made Luton: Controlled explosion after car find near station
List of bomb victims Leeds neighbours' shock

A second car believed to be linked to the attacks was also found at the station and towed to Leighton Buzzard, 10 miles (16km) west of Luton, for further examination.

Sir Iqbal Sacranie, of the Muslim Council of Britain, said it had received news about the suspects with "anguish, shock and horror".

He said: "It appears our youth have been involved in last week's horrific bombings against innocent people.

"Nothing in Islam can ever justify the evil actions of the bombers."

Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner Andy Hayman said the bombings were the work of "extremists and criminals".

"No-one should smear or stigmatise any community with these acts," he said.

Police are asking for anyone with information on the bombs to contact their anti-terrorist hotline on 0800 789 321.

LONDON BOMBINGS EVIDENCE King's Cross railway station
Four men, three of them from West Yorkshire caught on CCTV at 0830 on morning of attacks
Tavistock Square
Property of Suspect 1, from W Yorks, found in bus wreckage
Liverpool Street / Aldgate
"Very likely" that body of one suspect from W Yorks found
Property of Suspects 2 and 3 found
Edgware Road
Property of Suspect 3 found


Subway bombers described as 'utterly ordinary'

Shahzad Tanweer, a 22-year-old science graduate, appears on the cover of the British newspaper '<i>The Sun.</i>'

Shahzad Tanweer, a 22-year-old science graduate, on the cover of the British newspaper 'The Sun.'

Police officers guard a house raided by police in connection with last week's bombings in London, at Thornhill near Dewsbury, England on Wednesday. (AP / Gareth Copley)

Police officers guard a house raided by police in connection with last week's bombings in London, at Thornhill near Dewsbury, England on Wednesday. (AP / Gareth Copley)

A car believed to have been hired by the London bombers is removed from Luton station car park early Wednesday July 13, 2005, after police spent 14 hours dealing with 'volatile' explosives at the scene. (AP / Edmond Terakopian)

A car believed to have been hired by the London bombers is removed from Luton station car park early Wednesday July 13, 2005, after police spent 14 hours dealing with 'volatile' explosives at the scene. (AP / Edmond Terakopian)

Commuters walk past a poster of a woman who has been missing since last week's London bombings, near King's Cross station in London on Wednesday. (AP / Matt Dunham)

Commuters walk past a poster of a woman who has been missing since last week's London bombings, near King's Cross station in London on Wednesday. (AP / Matt Dunham) News Staff

Updated: Wed. Jul. 13 2005 11:28 PM ET

One phrase used by neighbors to describe the British-born, Pakistani-rooted London transit bombers is "utterly ordinary."

For the Leeds, England family of one of those bombers, the transition from ordinary young man to killer is inexplicable.

"How could he do anything like this?" said Bashir Ahmed, uncle of Shahzad Tanweer, 22, told reporters Wednesday. "It's unbelievable. I can't believe that."

Tanweer graduated with a degree in sports science at Leeds University. He loved playing cricket; he participated in a long match during his last night on earth.

He also helped out at his family's fish and chip shop. Tanweer had also studied religion during a visit to his parent's homeland Pakistan.

In 2004, police arrested Tanweer for disorderly conduct and cautioned.

But friends said he was a "good Muslim" and the type of person who could get on with anybody.

The bomb he is suspected of detonating killed seven people between the Aldgate and Liverpool Street subway stations.

Hasib Hussain, 18, also of Leeds, had told his parents he was going to London on July 7 to attend a religious studies seminar. He had become a very devout Muslim after a visit to Pakistan -- the homeland of his parents.

He too was arrested in 2004 for shoplifting and was let off with a caution.

After the bombings, his family -- described by neighbors as very nice people -- called the police and reported him missing.

When police examined a blown-up double-decker bus near London's Tavistock Square, they found remains matching Hussain's description.

They concluded he had been holding the bomb. He became their first suspect. Thirteen died in that explosion.

Security cameras at London's Kings Cross station captured the four of them together, chatting casually and wearing backpacks before heading off in separate directions.

The third suspect was Mohammed Sidique Khan, 30. He wasn't from there, but his wife was. Her mother was a pillar of the community. The two moved there about five months ago from Leeds.

Khan was the father of an eight-month-old girl. He worked with disabled children while his wife teaches.

Seven people died at the Edgeware Road subway blast site where his remains were found.

Muslims in the community don't recall seeing him in the local mosques.

A fourth suspect hasn't been publicly identified yet, but the subway bomb he detonated near Russell Station killed 21 people.

Despite Tanweer's and Hussain's brushes with the law, police have described the suspects as "cleanskins," meaning they had no known connection to extremists or conventional criminal records.

For Muslims in Leeds, if not all of Britain's 1.6 million followers of Islam, people sought answers.

"There must be ringleaders working underground who are recruiting and pushing and motivating these young people to commit these atrocities," said Ishtiaq Ahmed of the Bedford Council of Mosques.

Right now, the investigation's focus is to find those ringleaders.

With a report from CTV's Tom Kennedy

London police hunt for 'master bomber'

Police were trying to work out Wednesday whether four young British Muslims suspected of carrying out suicide attacks in London last week were inspired by a master bomber who may still be at large.

Anti-terrorist police have said it would be "remarkably reckless" to rule out further attacks in Britain - despite Tuesday's stunning breakthrough in the bid to track down those who carried out the killings.

"We have to assume there are others who are ready to do the kinds of things that these people did last Thursday," Home Secretary Charles Clarke told BBC radio.

The police investigation is expected to focus on the towns and cities of West Yorkshire, in northern England, where three of the four bombers are known to have lived.

The region has a big Muslim population, and police will try to establish whether it is harbouring a cell or an operative, possibly from al-Qaida, who might have planned the bombings which killed at least 52 people and injured 700.

Media reports suggest the four bombers were aged between 19 and 30 and were so-called "cleanskins" - with no convictions or known terror involvement. The suspects were all believed to be British nationals, of ethnic Pakistani origin.

Police say it is "very likely" that one of the four died in the blasts on London's transport network, and it is possible that all four blew themselves up deliberately.

If they did, it would be the first time that suicide bombers, who have wreaked carnage from the streets of the United States to Iraq, have struck in Western Europe.

Shocked friends and neighbours said they were ordinary youths, more interested in sport than politics.

"He was a sweet guy who gets on with everyone," was one description of one of the suspects, a 22-year-old sports science graduate who occasionally helped out in his father's fast food shop in the city of Leeds.

The Muslim Council of Britain said it was stunned that English Muslims appeared to have carried out the attacks. "We have received today's terrible news from the police with anguish, shock and horror," Secretary-General Iqbal Sacranie said in a statement.

"Nothing in Islam can ever justify the evil actions of the bombers."

The four travelled to London on the day of the blasts and were seen on closed-circuit television carrying rucksacks at King's Cross rail station shortly before 8:30 am, police said.

A police source said they looked relaxed, more like they were going on a hiking holiday than a suicide mission.

Police seized explosives after searching houses in the Leeds area and arrested a relative of one of the suspects. The relative was brought to London for questioning.

They also towed away a car in Luton, just north of London, which they said was linked to the bombings.

The government says last Thursday's attacks on three trains and a bus bear the hallmark of Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida network, blamed for the 9/11 attacks on the United States and the Madrid bombings last year.

Alex Standish, editor of Jane's Intelligence Digest, said that if the suicide bombing theory was confirmed, Britain - accustomed in recent decades to bombings by the nationalist Irish Republican Army - would have crossed a new threshold.

Source: China Daily

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