- By Patrick Jefferson
- Main image supplied by The Independent and Microsoft Network News
Terror suspect appears in court to answer attempted murder charges
The first pictures have emerged of the man accused of stabbing Tube passengers in Leytonstone on Saturday night. An attack that resulted in a dramatic increase in undercover counter terror presence at tube stations as well as provoking powerful public speeches from politicians.
Suspect Muhaydin Mire, 29. was taken from custody to appeared at Westminster Magistrates Court on Monday morning accused of the attempted murder of a 56-year-old man.
The attack on Saturday night sent terror fears rippling around the capital, with witnesses reporting the attacker shouted “this is for Syria” and “all your blood will be spilled”. Following the attack, extra uniformed, undercover police and counter terror special operations units, backed by a growing force of armed officers, additional CCTV and canine units have been drafted in to protect London’s underground network.
The incident has raised serious questions about how London would respond to a large-scale terror attack. One former commander said it was alarming that heavy duty arms officers were not at the scene on Saturday, although all British police officers are now armed with electrical, chemical and blunt force weaponry, in the forms of a chemical spray, a baton, knife and Taser.
John O’Connor, a former commander of London’s elite police unit, ‘the Flying Squad’, said: “It is alarming. We should have thought about this years ago. We still rely on the first people on the scene having to deal with a situation, whoever they are, whether a uniform officer or firearms officer.”
Mobile phone videos of the attack appeared to show a man with a knife confronting several people in the station before attacking the victim and slashing his throat.
A large pool of blood could be seen on the station floor as terrified passengers, including children, fled in tears.
As the man was arrested, a passer-by was heard telling him “You ain’t no Muslim, brov” a sentiment which was echoed across social media throughout Sunday and Monday morning.
One other male was injured in the attack, and a female who was originally thought to be hurt was later found to be suffering from shock.
Prominent Muslim political figures have spoken out for peace. (Read more…)