Police granted extra time to question 'bomb' suspects

Police conducting the investigation into an alleged bombing conspiracy on UK flights have been granted more time to question 23 suspects currently being held in custody.

The court granted between five and seven days to question the 23 suspects.

One person has been released without charge following police questioning.

Police can apply to the courts to detain terrorism suspects held under the 2006 Terrorism Act for up to 28 days.

A number of people are also being held in Pakistan over links with the alleged plot. It is understood that 17 people are being held in Pakistan, among them are two British nationals.

Earlier this week EU interior ministers met to discuss the response to the terror allegations.

The talks centred around accelerating work to:
  • prevent EU citizens turning to terrorism through radicalisation and recruitment
  • adopt new standards of protective security at European airports
  • increase research into explosives, focusing on the detection of liquid explosives
  • tackle the use of the internet by terrorists to radicalise young people, spread messages of hate and plan mass murder
  • pre-empt further terrorist plots.
Home Secretary John Reid again apologised for the inconvenience and difficulties being experienced by travellers in the UK's airports, describing it as “regretful”, but he said: “It is not possible to fight terrorism without inconvenience.”

However, he said: “It is terrible if someone is delayed but the inconvenience is not being imposed for the sake of imposing it. It is being imposed in order to defeat terrorism and to protect our public.'

Passengers on UK flights remain restricted to one small item of hand luggage.


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