Four suspected Islamist terrorists have been arrested by armed police on suspicion of plotting attacks in the UK – amid fears of a Remembrance Sunday plot. Those arrested included a 19-year-old High Wycombe man who neighbours said had returned from a trip to Pakistan earlier this year and was described as having been recently radicalised. Police would not discuss whether the men had a specific target in mind but the timing of the raids raises the prospect that they may have been planning an incident on Remembrance Sunday.
One of the men, a 27-year-old, was arrested in a west London street after being surrounded by armed police from Metropolitan Police’s Counter Terrorism Command. Three other men, aged 19, 22 and 25, were held at addresses in Hounslow, west London, and High Wycombe, Bucks, on Thursday night. The 19-year-old – who was named locally as Yousaf Syed and was held following a raid by 30 police officers on a house in Desborough Road, High Wycombe at around 7.30pm on Thursday – was described by neighbours as having become religious in recent months. All four men were taken to police stations in central London and remain in custody, while a number of residential addresses and vehicles, in Greenford, Hounslow, Brentford and Walthamstow, were searched. The arrests and searches are part of an “ongoing investigation into Islamist related terrorism”, the Metropolitan Police said.
Although there is no suspected link with the conflict in Syria, there have been fears that extremists in this country would try to copy the beheadings carried out by Islamic State.