Murder of British MP David Amess: the suspect had followed a deradicalization program

the essential British MP David Amess was stabbed to death this Friday 15 October. British investigative services speak of a potentially terrorist act. A suspect was arrested: he had been referred to a national anti-radicalization program.

The suspect in the murder of British MP David Amess, an act described as terrorist by police, had been referred to the national anti-radicalization program, but did not follow it for long, according to British media. Investigators have until Friday to question this 25 year-old man, after having placed him in detention under the terrorism law, which allows them to prolong his detention.

To read also: A British MP stabbed: what we know about the death of David Amess, MP for 69 years

The investigation, entrusted to the anti-terrorism department, reveals according to the first elements “a potential motivation linked to Islamist extremism”, according to the police who said they carried out searches at three addresses in the London area.

The Prevent program

Conservative MP David Amess, 69 years old and father of five, received his constituents at a Methodist church in Leigh-on-Sea, at about 60 km east of London, when he was stabbed to death shortly after noon on Friday (00 H 00 GMT). The man arrested is said to be a British national of Somali origin named Ali Harbi Ali, according to the BBC. Oriented several years ago towards the Prevent program, a device intended for people at risk of radicalization and based on volunteering, it would not have been very diligent according to this media and has never been officially considered as a ” subject of interest “for the national security agency.

Police and security services believe the assailant acted alone and was “self-radicalized,” according to the Sunday Times. It could have been inspired by Al-Shabab, Islamists linked to Al-Qaeda in Somalia. Ali Harbi Ali’s father, Harbi Ali Kullane, a former adviser to the Somali Prime Minister, confirmed to the Sunday Times that his son was in detention and said he was “very traumatized”. John Lamb, a local Conservative adviser, told British media outlets that the young man waited patiently for his turn before pouncing on the MP and repeatedly stabbing him in front of two MP’s assistants. “I was told he stabbed Sir David and just waited in the church hall until the police arrived,” association vice president Kevin Buck told The Telegraph on Saturday. constituency. He had made an appointment a week in advance, according to the Daily Mail.

A night vigil this Saturday

On Saturday evening, hundreds of people attended a candlelight vigil at a sports field near the scene of the crime, observing a minute of silence in memory of the MP. As a sign of unity, Conservative Prime Minister Boris Johnson and opposition Labor leader Keir Starmer laid wreaths of flowers at the scene of the tragedy on Saturday morning.

Boris Johnson left a message hailing an “excellent parliamentarian and a much loved colleague and friend”. Many people, including members of the Muslim community, came to lay bouquets of flowers and written tributes to the victim.

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