London terrorist attack, 5 people killed and more wounded
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Five people have died and at least 50 are wounded after a bloody terrorist attack against London. Khalid Masood (born Adrian Elms; his name was changed upon conversion to Islam) used a rental car to smash across the pavement of Westminster Bridge.
After the vehicle crashed into a fence, Masood charged Parliament with a knife, where he killed unarmed policeman Keith Palmer. Officers shot and killed Masood. According to the BBC, an ISIS news agency claimed credit for the attack, though no evidence of contact between Masood and the group has surfaced, indicating ISIS may believe they inspired the attack.
While Prime Minister Theresa May acknowledged the government had “‘once investigated [Masood] in relation to concerns about violent extremism’ he was a ‘peripheral figure’ and ‘not part of the current intelligence picture,’” the BBC reports. Masood was born in Kent, England, and he reportedly worked as an English teacher in Saudi Arabia for several years, although the Department of Education had no record of his qualifications.
Several Americans were killed or wounded. One of the departed is Kurt Cochran, a Utah resident who was in London with his wife for their 25th anniversary. They were due to fly home Thursday. His death was confirmed in a statement released by their church.
The UN Security Council observed a moment of silence for victims of terrorism. UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson spoke of international to the Council, calling for global unity in response to the attack that injured people from at least 11 foreign nations (including South Korea, France, Australia, China, Romania, Germany, Poland, Ireland, Italy, and Greece) according to CNN.
At the time of writing, two suspects from Birmingham are still in custody, and numerous addresses have been raided by police who seized 2,700 items. The UK’s terror threat level is expected to remain at “severe” for some time, and a bolstered armed police presence will continue to remain vigilant, the BBC reports.