Government rejects call for 21 July inquiry
London Independent | July 11, 2007
The Government has brushed aside opposition demands for an inquiry into intelligence failings that allowed four failed suicide bombers to slip through the net. The statement came as the jury in the 21 July terrorist trial was discharged after failing to reach verdicts on the last two defendants.
Manfo Kwaku Asiedu and Adel Yahya remained in custody pending a decision by the prosecution today on whether to press for a retrial.Muktar Said Ibrahim, Yassin Omar, Ramzi Mohammed and Hussain Osman, all convicted of conspiracy to murder at Woolwich Crown Court on Monday, will be sentenced today.
Police and the security services have been accused of missing several opportunities to trap the gang. Ibrahim, the ringleader, was allowed to leave Britain to attend a terrorist training camp in Pakistan while facing charges over extremist behaviour.
An MI5 briefing note obtained by ITN last night disclosed that he had been subject to a "low-level short-term investigation, but was not considered to be a direct threat.
David Davis, the shadow Home Secretary, said: "This... reinforces the case for an independent inquiry so that we can learn the lessons of these events and improve our security."
But Tony McNulty, the Policing and Security minister, last night made clear that the Government would not authorise an inquiry. He said all the relevant information had been passed to the parliamentary Intelligence and Security Committee.
A Home Office source said an inquiry would divert the police's attention from tracking other terrorist conspiracies.
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