British authorities have identified a Sudanese national as the man they say was behind the terrorist strike at London’s Houses of Parliament.
Metropolitan Police said Salih Khater was the man who drove his vehicle into a crowd of people before ramming the security gate at the parliament building Tuesday.
Khater was immediately arrested, officials said. Neil Basu, head of Scotland Yard’s Counter-Terror Command, told reporters investigators are trying to find a motive.
“Detectives from the counter-terrorism unit are making other urgent inquiries to ensure that there is no outstanding risk to the public,” Basu said.
Three people were hurt in Tuesday’s attack.
“Two people have been taken to hospital,” Basu said. “One man has been discharged and one woman remains in hospital being treated for serious but thankfully, non-life threatening injuries. Another man was also treated at the scene but didn’t require hospital treatment.”
Salih Khater’s brother Abdullah said they are all in a ‘state of shock’ about his sibling’s carborne rampage outside the Houses of Parliament at 7.30am yesterday morning.
Khater told friends he had a visa appointment at Sudan’s embassy in St James’ Park – less than a mile away from Westminster – and left Birmingham the night before to avoid early morning traffic.
But police believe he cruised the capital for six hours before deliberately ploughing his Ford Fiesta through crowds of cyclists and pedestrians before careering into terror-proof security barriers, narrowly missing two policemen.
Khater came to the UK eight years ago as an asylum seeker fleeing the wartorn Darfur region of Sudan and became a British citizen two years ago after settling in Birmingham.
But security sources told MailOnline today the Home Office had recently told him he was being investigated over ‘irregularities’ in his successful citizenship application.
Friends said he had also been depressed after he was also thrown off his Coventry University accountancy course for failing his first year and was ‘devastated’ when his father and a brother died in the past six months.
MailOnline has asked the Metropolitan Police, West Midlands Police and the Home Office to comment on what they knew about Khater, what he was doing in London and his immigration status. All three have refused.
Khater lived in a flat in Sparkhill, home to one in 10 British jihadis already jailed over terrorist plots and police have raided two properties in Britain’s second city and Nottingham overnight.
The terror suspect has been described as a quiet loner who loved Aston Villa, Celine Dion, smoking shisha and whiling away time at an internet cafe below his old flat in the Sparkhill area of Birmingham.
His tenth floor council flat in Birmingham is just ten minutes from the former home of Khalid Masood and police will be probing if he was inspired by his murderous rampage 17 months ago.