UK ter­ror­ism ar­rests soar to record level af­ter at­tacks

Global Times US Edition - - WORLD -

The num­ber of peo­ple ar­rested in Bri­tain on sus­pi­cion of ter­ror­ism of­fences rock­eted by 68 per­cent in the last year to the high­est fig­ure on record dur­ing a pe­riod when the coun­try suf­fered four deadly at­tacks, fig­ures showed on Thurs­day.

Sta­tis­tics from the Home Of­fice (in­te­rior min­istry) showed there were 379 ar­rests in the year to June, up from 226 from the 12 pre­vi­ous months, and the most since 2001 when the data be­gan to be col­lected.

Bri­tain is on its sec­ond­high­est threat level, “se­vere,” mean­ing an at­tack is highly likely and 36 peo­ple were killed in ter­ror­ist in­ci­dents in the first six months of 2017.

Among the ar­rests, 12 came af­ter an at­tack in March on London’s West­min­ster Bridge when a man drove a car into pedes­tri­ans killing four, be­fore he stabbed a po­lice­man to death out­side par­lia­ment.

An­other 23 fol­lowed a sui­cide bomb­ing at a pop con­cert in Manch­ester in May, and the fol­low­ing month po­lice ar­rested 21 sus­pects af­ter three Is­lamist mil­i­tants drove into pedes­tri­ans on London Bridge be­fore stab­bing peo­ple at nearby restau­rants and bars, killing eight.

One ar­rest fol­lowed an at­tack in north London when a van was driven into wor­ship­pers near a mosque which left one man dead.

Bri­tain’s most se­nior coun­tert­er­ror­ism of­fi­cer Mark Row­ley has said po­lice have been ar­rest­ing a sus­pect ev­ery day. He said this week that there had been a shift in the threat level rather than an iso­lated spike.

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