London terror attack: Who was Khalid Masood?

Apr 22, 2017, 01:55
London terror attack: Who was Khalid Masood?

British police said two further arrests have been made in connection with the deadly attack outside parliament in London and police are trying to establish if he acted on his own or others had directed him to do so.

Another man, 58, was also arrested Friday morning at another address in Birmingham, and held on the same charge.

London police said that among those injured, two remain in critical condition in hospitals, one of them with life-threatening injuries.

Metropolitan Police Acting Deputy Commissioner Mark Rowley told journalists late on Wednesday that five people, including the attacker, died as a result of the terror act.

Details are gradually emerging about Masood, who was shot dead by a police firearms officer after he rammed a vehicle into pedestrians on Westminster Bridge and stabbed an unarmed police officer outside parliament.

New details emerged Friday about the British-born man who mowed down pedestrians in the heart of London and then stabbed a police officer to death outside the Houses of Parliament.

London's Metropolitan Police would not confirm the newspaper's report that investigators went to the hotel following the attack after finding a receipt in the hire auto.

Police named him as Khalid Masood, 52, and said he had numerous convictions for violent offences but none terrorism-related.

"We never thought anything of him", he said.

"Our working assumption is that he was inspired by global terrorism", said Rowley of London's Metropolitan Police.

The death toll in Wednesday's terrorist attack near the U.K. Parliament has risen, after a 75-year-old man died of his injuries.

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But the 52-year-old was not under investigation when he sped across Westminster Bridge on Wednesday, plowing down pedestrians with a hired auto before running into the parliamentary grounds and fatally stabbing an unarmed policeman.

The Saudi Arabian embassy in London said Masood worked in the country, home to some of the most virulent Islamic extremism, for several years, raising the possibility he was radicalised overseas.

"As a result of their co-operation and our enquiries, we are completely satisfied that they are not connected in any way to the terrorist attack in Westminster on Wednesday", he said.

Retiree Wendy Scott was among the hundreds of people who came to Trafalgar Square to express her solidarity with victims of the attack.

He also revealed that the full birth name of the attacker - who used many aliases - was Adrian Russell Ajao. "He may also be known by a number of other names".

Police raided the room at the Preston Park Hotel in Brighton after the attack, searching for clues about Masood.

People lit candles for those killed and wounded and one woman painted the word "freedom" on her forehead. "The attack in London this week has again demonstrated the importance of worldwide efforts to confront and eradicate terrorism", the Saudi Arabian embassy said.

The terror ISIS group claimed that one of its "soldiers" carried out the attack, the worst in Britain since the July 2005 bombings which left 52 people dead.

The number of armed officers remains at almost double strength in London in the wake of the attack, Rowley said, while extra police officers are also on patrol elsewhere in the UK.

"From the face, from the beard - that is 100 percent him, " she said.

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