Police know the identity of London Bridge terrorists, May confirms

Police know the identity of London Bridge terrorists, May confirms
The names of the London Bridge terrorists will be released “as soon as possible,” Prime Minister Theresa May has said. Her statement comes as police raid a number of properties and try to establish whether the attackers were part of a wider network.

Seven people were killed and 48 injured when three terrorists wearing fake suicide bomb vests used a rental van to mow down pedestrians on London Bridge on Saturday night. They then went on a knife rampage in Borough Market, stabbing victims with 12 inch blades.

Thirty-six people remain in hospital. Of these, 18 are in a critical condition.

Police investigating the attack searched two more properties in East London on Monday morning and detained “a number of people,” the Metropolitan Police said.

On Sunday, four other addresses were raided in Barking, including the home of one of the suspected attackers. Scotland Yard said seven women and five men aged between 19 and 50 were arrested under the Terrorism Act.

In a brief, pre-recorded statement after the COBRA emergency meeting, May said 11 people are in police custody.

She said police are working to establish the identity of all of those killed. She says the victims were from different countries.

This was not just an attack on London and the UK, but on the free world, she said.

On Sunday, four other addresses were raided in Barking, including the home of one of the suspected attackers. Scotland Yard said seven women and five men aged between 19 and 50 were arrested under the Terrorism Act.

Britain’s government and local authorities are working closely with police to guarantee security around the election, with robust plans put in place weeks ago, May’s spokesperson says.

“There are plans in place for the general election. Police have been working closely with local authorities for several weeks on this. Those places were developed with the threat level being at ‘severe’ so they are pretty robust.”

Police say they know the identities of the attackers and will name them “as soon as operationally possible.” It has been claimed that one of the attackers was twice reported to police over his extremist views.

The first known victim of the attack was named as Christine Archibald from Canada. In a statement, her family said: “We grieve the loss of our beautiful, loving daughter and sister. She had room in her heart for everyone and believed strongly that every person was to be valued and respected.”

Cressida Dick, the Metropolitan Police commissioner, acknowledged that police had to “step up” their fights against terrorism after it emerged one of the attackers was known to the force.

Dick added that three attacks carried out by Islamist militants in Britain in the last three months had been largely domestic plots and the majority of the threat facing the country is not directed from overseas.

“All the recent attacks I think have a primarily domestic center of gravity,” she told BBC radio.

“There are five that we have foiled and these three recent attacks - in some of them there are undoubtedly international dimensions … I would say the majority of the threat we are facing at the moment does not appear to be directed from overseas.”

Speaking outside Downing Street on Sunday, May said “enough is enough” and vowed to be tougher on terrorism.

“While we have made significant progress in recent years, there is - to be frank - far too much tolerance of extremism in our country,” she said.

Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) has claimed responsibility for the attack through their communications outlet Amaq. Evidence linking the group to the atrocity is sketchy, however.