Report cites neglected leads for failure to thwart London bombings

first_imgLONDON – Britain’s intelligence agencies missed chances to thwart last year’s transit attacks by failing to follow up leads on two of the men who became the country’s first suicide bombers, major reports said Thursday. The government blamed a lack of funds, a too-slow buildup of intelligence staff in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States, and spies’ failure to anticipate that British citizens would contemplate suicide attacks on their homeland. But the reports found “no culpable failures” by agencies, including the MI5 and MI6 intelligence services, saying the bombings of three London subways and a double-decker bus July 7 came without warning. Britain’s Home Office said in one of the reports that there is “as yet no firm evidence” of al-Qaida’s role, if any, in organizing the attacks, which killed 52 commuters and the four bombers. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBasketball roundup: Sierra Canyon, Birmingham set to face off in tournament quarterfinalsHowever, suspected ringleader Mohammed Sidique Khan and accomplice Shezad Tanweer traveled to Pakistan and it is “likely that they had some contact with al-Qaida figures,” said a second report, by the Intelligence and Security Committee, a panel of nine British lawmakers. In September, Khan made a posthumous farewell in a videotape aired on Al-Jazeera television. Khan said he was inspired by al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden. The association of the al-Qaida leader and the 30-year-old suicide bomber was considered at the time to be the strongest link yet of a role by the terror organization in the attacks. No links have been found between the July 7 bombers and the group that mounted failed bombing attempts against the transport system two weeks later, one of the reports said. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

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