British police have revealed the identities of two of the three men responsible for the terrorist attack in London on Saturday night which left 7 people dead and dozens injured. Khuram Butt, who was the son of Pakistani Immigrants and grew up in the Barking area of London, had been reported to the authorities on at least two occasions by members of the public who suspected him of propagating radical Islamist ideas. Speaking to the Guardian newspaper, Erica Gasparri, a neighbour of Butt’s, said she reported him to the police after her son told her that he wanted to become a Muslim following an encounter with Butt in the park. When she went to confront him she said that he told her “‘I’m ready to do whatever I need to do in the name of Allah. I am ready in the name of Allah to do what needs to be done including killing my own mother.” Despite the police expressing their concern and saying they would pass it on to Scotland Yard, Gasparri said nobody came to interview her afterwards.
Another man, who didn’t give his name but described himself as a friend of Butt’s, said that he called the anti-terror hotline to tell them of his fears that Butt had been radicalised after he saw him watching clips of the American hate preacher Ahmad Musa Jibril. Butt, who had been banned from one local mosque for distributing leaflets telling Muslims not to vote and forcibly ejected from another for repeatedly shouting “only God is in charge” during the sermon, also featured in a Channel 4 documentary called the Jihadis Next Door. In this, he was filmed along with several other men praying with the black flag used by ISIS in a London park.
Irish police are working with their UK counterparts to piece together the identity of the other attacker who was named as Rachid Redouane who had lived in Dublin as recently as last year before moving to London. It is thought that he had lived in the Irish capital with his Scottish wife and worked as a pastry chef before moving to London and separating with his spouse. Less is known about Redouane as he was not on any watch list. He claimed to Moroccan or Libyan and sometimes went by the alias of Rachid Elkhdar. The third attacker has yet to be named by police.