Security services 'thwarted Islamist plot to murder Theresa May'
Police and the security services stopped a suspected plot to kill the Prime Minister with an attack on Downing St, it emerged last night.
Theresa May is understood to have been the target of an alleged plan to detonate a bomb outside Number 10 and then launch a knife attack on the PM in the aftermath.
A 20-year-old man will appear at Westminster Magistrates Court today charged with offences under the Terrorism Act, having been arrested on 28 November on charges of preparing an act of terrorism.
Yesterday Home Secretary Amber Rudd revealed that counter-terror police and MI5 have thwarted some 22 plots since the murder of Lee Rigby in March 2013.
However a report released yesterday into this year's terror atrocities suggested it was "conceivable" the attack on the Manchester Arena could have been stopped.
The analysis from former government terror adviser David Anderson QC noted that attacker Salman Abedi was a closed 'subject of interest' (SOI) to the security services, meaning he was not under active investigation.
However, MI5 did receive intelligence on Abedi in the months leading up to the bombing which the report states "can be seen to have been highly relevant to the planned attack".
He was also identified as one of a small number of closed SOIs who may have merited further investigation, and a meeting to discuss his and other cases had been due on 31 May, just nine days after the attack took place.
At the same time Mr Anderson’s report made clear that the security services are fighting an uphill battle to prevent every attempt on civilian life.
“In a free society and against a worsening threat background, it is not realistic to expect everything to be stopped,” he wrote.