Arrests made by counter-terrorism officers in the UK have risen by more than 50% in the year up to the end of June 2017 as the police and the Security and Intelligence Services have continued their efforts to make the UK a hostile place for terrorists. The arrest figures released by the Home Office reflect the increasing pace of activity by police right across the UK’s counter-terrorism network as they tackle the current threat.
A total of 379 arrests were made in the year to June 2017, compared to 226 in the preceding year. This represents a 68% increase.
Metropolitan Police Service Deputy Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu, the Senior National Co-ordinator for Counter-Terrorism Policing, stated: “There’s no doubt that, since March, and following on from the attacks in London and Manchester, we’ve seen a sea change in momentum. While the terrorist threat has increased in recent months, so too has our own activity, as is reflected by this significant increase in arrests.”
Basu continued: “We’re taking every possible opportunity to disrupt terrorist activity, be it by making arrests for terrorism offences, intervening where there are signs of radicalisation or working with communities to prevent terrorists from operating in their area. The police service, together with the Security and Intelligence Services, is determined to make the UK as hostile an environment for terrorists as possible.”
Since the Westminster attack back in March, there have been six terrorist plots foiled on the mainland by the police and the UK’s intelligence community, bringing the number of foiled plots to 19 since June 2013.
The Home Office figures also show the broad spectrum of those individuals being arrested in connection with terrorism investigations in terms of their age, gender and ethnicity.
Deputy Assistant Commissioner Basu added: “The public has a vital role to play in helping us to combat terrorism, but what these figures show is that there’s no such thing as a ‘typical’ terrorist. We’re seeing young and old, women and men, all from a variety of different ethnic backgrounds and communities. It’s therefore important that members of the public remain vigilant in all situations and report any suspicious activity to the police.”
*Suspicious activity can be reported in confidence via the Anti-Terrorist Hotline on 0800 789 321