LONDON — Both suspects in the killing of a serving soldier in London were known to security services, senior Whitehall sources have confirmed to the BBC.
One of the suspects is understood to be 28-year-old Muslim convert Michael Adebolajo, according to sources.
He and another man are under arrest in hospital after being shot by police after Wednesday’s attack in Woolwich.
Prime Minister David Cameron has said the UK will “never give in to terror or terrorism”.
Shortly after the killing a man, thought to be Adebolajo, was filmed by a passer-by, saying he carried out the attack because British soldiers killed Muslims every day.
Sources said the men had featured in “several investigations” in recent years – but were not deemed to be planning an attack – “were not inaccurate”.
Intercepted by police
They confirmed one of the suspects was intercepted by police last year while leaving the country.
Speaking outside 10 Downing Street today, Cameron said: “One of the best ways of defeating terrorism is to go about our normal lives.”
He said there was no justification in Islam for the attacks, which were “solely and purely” the responsibility of the individuals involved.
Across London there are 1,200 extra police officers on duty in response to the attacks, Assistant Commissioner Simon Byrne said.
Earlier officers raided a flat believed to belong to one of the attackers on a Greenwich housing estate.
Neighbours said two sisters in their 30s, an older woman and a teenage boy were taken away in a police van.
An address in Saxilby, Lincolnshire, is also being searched in connection with the attack.
According to BBC sources, Adebolajo, a Briton of Nigerian descent, comes from a devout Christian family but took up Islam after leaving college in 2001.
He was described as “bright and witty” when he was at college. (BBC)