London. UK. Sept 16th: The U.K. threat level remained at critical as London Police arrested an 18 year old man in the departure area of the port at Dover today, Saturday and searched a house near London in connection with Friday’s detonation of an improvised bomb on a tube train that injured at least 29 people. The Metropolitan Police said in a statement that the man detained in Dover was held under a section of the U.K. Terrorism Act. He has since been transferred to a police station in London. Dover’s port is the main ferry link between the U.K. and France. Over 12 million passengers as well as millions of cars and trucks passed through the port in 2016.
According to the police statement, Officers later Saturday evacuated residents in a section of Sunbury-on-Thames in Surrey, about 15 miles (24 kilometers) southwest of London, as they searched a home as “a precautionary measure” after the arrest.
That search “will take some time,” Neil Basu, the Metropolitan Police’s senior national co-ordinator for counter terrorism policy, said in a statement. “We are keeping an open mind around whether more than one person is responsible for the attack and we are still pursuing numerous lines of inquiry and at a great pace.”
Police have identified 121 witnesses so far and spoken to 100 of them already. Officers continue to trawl through hours of closed-circuit television footage and videos and photographs sent by members of the public, Basu said.
UK Prime Minister, Theresa May, said earlier that the device was “intended to cause serious harm.”
“This is a very significant arrest,” Home Secretary Amber Rudd said in a televised interview Saturday after a meeting of the government’s situation response committee. “The police have made very good progress, but the operation is ongoing.”
The U.K. terror threat level was raised to the highest level, signaling further attacks may be imminent, Prime Minister Theresa May said late Friday, as police hunted for suspects who set off the improvised bomb at the Parsons Green station at about 8:20 a.m., causing what witnesses described as a fireball. The joint terrorism analysis center’s assessment “is that further attacks may be imminent,” May said in a recorded statement.
U.S. President Donald Trump said Friday on Twitter that the “loser terrorist” was “in the sights of Scotland Yard,” a reference to the headquarters of London’s Metropolitan Police Service.
May complained directly to him when Trump called to offer condolences, according to a U.K. government official familiar with the conversation. She was more measured in a pooled broadcast interview earlier: “I never think it’s helpful for anyone to speculate on what’s an ongoing investigation.”
Rudd said Saturday it was “much too early” to say whether the man in custody was known to the authorities.
The attack is the fifth this year in the U.K. and Londoners are growing accustomed to the sight of armed police patrolling the transport network. Police said on Thursday that terrorism-related arrests had risen 68 percent over the past year.
Earlier this year assailants with vans and knives attacked passers by on Westminster Bridge and London Bridge in two separate strikes, and a van was driven into worshippers outside a mosque in Finsbury Park. A suicide bomber attacked a concert venue in Manchester in May, killing more than 20 people including children and mothers. The terror threat level was raised to critical after that attack and lowered four days later to severe, meaning an attack is considered highly likely but not imminent.
Most of the attacks have been claimed or praised by the jihadist group Islamic State. On Friday, Amaq news said the London explosion had been carried out by a “group following the Islamic State.”
Video: London Police Declare Parsons Green Tube Station Explosion A Terrorist Incident
West London. UK. Sept 15th: London police have declared a suspected explosion at Parsons Green tube station a terrorist incident. Commuters have reportedly suffered burn and stampede injuries after an explosion at Parsons Green underground station in west London.
Images shared online appeared to show a bucket with wires trailing from it smouldering inside a District line train.
Armed police, paramedics and firefighters are all on scene.
Witnesses described flames and a “fireball” following the incident at about 8.20am today. Security services and counter-terror teams are monitoring the situation.
London mayor Sadiq Khan has released a statement on his Facebook page:
“The Metropolitan Police have confirmed that the explosion on a train at Parsons Green Station this morning is being treated as terrorism.
Our city utterly condemns the hideous individuals who attempt to use terror to harm us and destroy our way of life.
As London has proven again and again, we will never be intimidated or defeated by terrorism.
I am in close contact with the Metropolitan Police, Transport for London, Government and other emergency services who are responding at the scene and leading the investigation. I will be attending the emergency COBRA meeting in Whitehall this afternoon with the Prime Minister.
My sincere gratitude goes to all our courageous emergency responders and the TfL staff who were first on the scene.
I urge all Londoners to remain calm and vigilant, and to check TfL’s website for travel advice.”
British Prime Minister Theresa May is to chair a meeting of the Government’s Cobra emergencies committee this afternoon to discuss the terrorist incident at Parsons Green.
Photo: London Police Declare Parsons Green Tube Station Explosion A Terrorist Incident
Theresa May says her “thoughts are with those injured at Parsons Green and the emergency services who, once again, are responding swiftly and bravely to a suspected terrorist incident”