Security services and police 'may need more help' to stop 'lone wolf' terrorists

By Richard Guttridge | Stafford | Crime | Published:

The Government needs to consider whether security services need more help in detecting "lone wolf" terrorists, an MP has said after three people were killed in Reading.

London Bridge attacker Usman Khan

Labour has called for a review into the official strategy for tackling attacks by lone terrorists after the incident in a Reading park earlier this month in which three people were stabbed to death.

It came after two people were killed on London Bridge in November by Usman Khan, who had been living in Stafford.

Officials accept preventing lone operators willing to commit murder is an incredibly difficult task but questions are now being asked about whether improvements could be made in agencies which have previously dealt with attackers.

Khan had been released from prison shortly before he struck on London Bridge and was living in flats on Wolverhampton Road. The suspect in the Reading attack, Khairi Saadallah, had previously been on the radar of security services but was not considered to be an immediate threat.

Shadow Home Secretary Nick Thomas-Symonds has called for a review into how a range of public services that could intervene at critical points are functioning.

And Labour MP for Wolverhampton South East, Pat McFadden, suggested there was no harm in assessing current operations to ensure everything possible was being done to protect the public.

Mr McFadden said: "This is a very difficult job for the police and security services because they are trying to keep tabs on a large number of suspects and make difficult judgements about who among them will make the leap from holding extremist opinions to carrying out acts of violence.

"But of course the fact that we have had several fatal attacks means we have to consider whether all the right powers are in place or whether more needs to be done to help the security services and police in that task.

"We have to do everything we can to keep the public safe and to combat the ongoing threat from extremist ideology and hate driven violence.”

Richard Guttridge

By Richard Guttridge
Investigations Editor - @RichG_star

Investigations Editor for the Express & Star.

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