A series of dramatic arrests in London may have averted a large-scale Islamic terror attack similar to Westgate Mall massacre in Nairobi. Armed police – part of a counter-terrorism unit – arrested four men in what was reported as “pre-planned, intelligence-led” raids.
Four men between the ages of 25 and 29 were arrested – all British nationals with origins in Algeria, Azerbaijan, Pakistan and Turkey.
Speaking on the condition of anonymity, an official said it was not not clear how advanced the operational planning of the attack was.
The arrest of two of the men, in front of a restaurant in an upscale neighborhood in west London was caught on CCTV footage. Eight police vehicles parked outside the restaurant, waited for the suspects to emerge. Officers could be seen struggling with the suspects before wrestling them to the ground. In another arrest made near the Tower of London, tires were shot out of a vehicle.
The men were believed to either be armed or have access to arms. Officers also searched six different locations and two cars after the arrests were made.
Watch below the CCTV footgage of two of the arrests: