Wednesday 18 January 2017

MI5 probes suicide bomber who lived in UK with family

Duncan Gardham, Marcus Oscarsson and Peter Hutchison in London

Published 13/12/2010 | 05:00

An Islamic suicide bomber who attacked Christmas shoppers in Sweden on Saturday is a British university graduate who was living there until two weeks ago.

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Taimur Abdulwahab al-Abdaly tried to set off a car bomb in a busy shopping street in Stockholm. The car caught fire and the bomber fled the scene before blowing himself up 300 yards away and 15 minutes later, injuring two bystanders.

It emerged that Abdulwahab, who was due to turn 29 yesterday, is a former physical therapy student at Bedfordshire University in Luton, and that his wife and three young children still live in the town.

MI5 is now investigating possible links with extremists in Luton, whether the bomber was radicalised at the university and claims that he was helped by an extremist group in Yemen, the base for al-Qa'ida in the Arabian Peninsula.

Neighbours said they had last seen Abdulwahab at the 1930s semi-detached house in Luton, Bedfordshire, two and a half weeks ago. The couple have two young girls and a baby son. His wife, Mona, a Swedish citizen, is said to run a home beauty company.

Tahir Hussain (33) a taxi driver who lives nearby, said: "I used to see him around often. He didn't say much but seemed nice. I used to see him walking with his kids."

The bomber had recently advertised on a Muslim dating site for a second wife. The site, Muslima.com, said he was born in Baghdad, Iraq, and moved to Sweden in 1992 and then to Britain in 2001 to study for a degree in physical therapy, marrying in 2004.

On his Facebook page, he included a group called Yawm al-Qiyaamah, meaning Day of Judgment, that featured a montage of Tower Bridge in flames.

Reports from Sweden said Abdulwahab was shouting in Arabic and carrying six pipebombs, one of which exploded, along with a rucksack full of nails and explosives.

A Yemeni Islamist website, Shumukh al-Islam, published a photograph of Abdulwahab in dark glasses, saying: "It is our brother, mujahid Taymour Abdel Wahab, who carried out the martyrdom operation in Stockholm."

Twelve minutes before the bombing on Saturday, a Swedish news agency received a message with two sound files, one in Swedish and one in Arabic, that was also sent to the Swedish security police.

The message criticised Sweden's silence over cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed and Swedish soldiers serving in Afghanistan. Abdulwahab said: "Now your children, your daughters and your sisters will die as our brothers, our sisters and our children are dying."

He also asked his family for forgiveness: "I never went to the Middle East to work or to make money, I went for jihad." He asked his wife to kiss the children on his behalf. "Tell them Daddy loves them," he added. (©Daily Telegraph, London)

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