Suspect believed to be Salih Khater, 29, who is of Sudanese origin and from Birmingham
A man has been held on suspicion of terrorism offences after a auto was driven into pedestrians and cyclists before disintegrating outside parliament in Westminster, as Downing Street discovered powers were working on hundreds of live counter-terrorism investigations.
The suspect, a 29 -year-old British national, was arrested at the incident after armed police officers swooped on a silver Ford Fiesta that had gate-crashed into defence railings on St Margaret Street at about 7.40 am on Tuesday.
The Guardian understands his figure is Salih Khater, who lives in the Sparkbrook area of Birmingham and is of Sudanese origin.
Scotland Yard said the man was not known to the security services and was not cooperating with probing policemen, but owing to the crash appearing to be deliberate and the location it was being treated as a suspected terrorist attack.
The car travelled to London from Birmingham on Monday night and wasted the time between around 1.25 am and 5.55 am in the Soho area, before moving to Westminster and Whitehall at about 6am where it remained before such incidents an hour and 40 a few minutes later, police said.
Two addresses in Birmingham and one in Nottingham were searched on Tuesday. Roger Godsiff, the MP for Birmingham Hall Green, said:” Today’s assault at Westminster was carried out by an individual who is believed to have been living in my constituency in Birmingham .”
Nottinghamshire police said they were supporting counter-terrorism detectives as they examined a residential property in the Radford area of the city. The address is thought to be a flat on Peveril Street.
Neighbours told the Press Association that the house, shared by inmates, is home to six Sudanese parties. Ibrahim Ahmed, 24, who lives in the same terrace row, said:” It’s Sudanese people who live there .”
The Nottingham Post are of the view that the car have been engaged in the incident was registered to an address in Nottingham. The current owned of private vehicles bought it on 20 June this year.
Two men and one female were injured during the clang. One was treated at the situation and two were taken to hospital and eventually discharged.
Theresa May said the threat level to the UK remained at severe, intend an attack was considered highly likely. The prime minister’s spokesman said the security services and counter-terrorism police were carrying out 676 live investigations at the end of June, up from more than 500 in March.
He said 13 Islamist stories and four plots by far-right fanaticals had been foiled in the past 18 months.
The home secretary, Sajid Javid, urged people to” maintain an open attention” about what had happened.” There are understandably a lot of questions about the incident … The briefing I have received from counter-terrorism police and the security services is that work is ongoing and they are doing everything they can to find out more ,” he said.