UK scoops up group with alleged ties to Paris and Brussels attackers

Five UK terrorism arrests in Birmingham and at Gatwick Airport 'linked to attacks on Brussels and Paris'

Whitehall sources described the arrests as “significant”.

Four people - three men aged 26, 40 and 59 and a 29-year-old woman - were arrested in Birmingham on Thursday night, while a 26-year-old man was arrested at Gatwick Airport early on Friday morning.

They were held on suspicion of being involved in the commission, preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism.
A key line of inquiry is whether the group is connected to Mohamed Abrini, a prime suspect in both the Brussels terror attacks last month and the November Paris atrocities.

Abrini is known to have visited contacts in Birmingham last year as well as visiting London and Manchester.

The British arrests came less than a week after Abrini himself was finally detained by Belgian police.
Abrini has been identified as the "man in the hat" in the video of the human bomb attacks in Brussels.   If the five are tied to the group who did the bombings and the Paris attacks it gives a glimpse of how widespread the ISIL insurgency is in Europe and the UK.


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