By Eva Rian, International News Writer
On September 15, a homemade bomb exploded on a train at Parsons Green station of west London suburbs, injuring 29 people in what the police are calling terrorism—this will be the fifth terrorist attack in the country this year. Fortunately, officials have said most of the injuries were flash burns with none of the victims in serious condition.
According to SITE Intel Group—an organization which monitors extremist internet traffic—Islamic State (ISIS) has claimed responsibility for the attack through Amaq, ISIS’ news agency, however there is no other evidence signifying the extremist group’s role. The group has also claimed it had arranged several IEDs but only one detonated—this too, has not been confirmed. The threat of a terrorist attack in the U.K. has been raised to critical—the highest level on a five-rung scale—since Friday night on September 15 due to an official assessment “that a further attack may be imminent.” The sophistication of the bomb appears to have been like other devices used in Islamist-inspired attacks.
After examining security-camera footage along with other evidence, the authorities have detained two suspects during what is being described as a “major manhunt.” Police had arrested an 18-year old suspect “on suspicion of being concerned in the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism,” in the departure area of Dover, a major port town approximately 80 miles southeast of London. British authorities also arrested a 21-year old man under section 41 of the Terrorism Act, which justifies an arrest without warrant of those suspected of terrorist involvement.
A search of a property in connection with his arrest in underway—surrounding buildings have been evacuated as a “precautionary measure.” The property is believed to be under the ownership of an elderly couple known for fostering hundreds of children, including refugees; the couple was honored by the Queen for their work with Member of the British Empire medals in 2010. These reports, which have been circulating across British media, have not been confirmed by the London Metropolitan Police.
An increased police presence was felt in the London streets over the weekend, especially in high-volume areas. Though, as of Sunday, September 17, the threat of attack has been lowered from “critical” to “severe,” indicating threat of an attack as “highly likely.”
A version of this article appeared in the Tuesday, September 26th print edition.
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