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London's counter-terror Prevent referrals buck UK trend - meeting

BBC News - 03/08/2023 by Jess Warren

Ali Harbi Ali

Ali Harbi Ali, who murdered Sir David Amess MP in 2021, engaged with Prevent between 2014 and 2015


Most of London's anti-terrorism referrals are for "Islamist activity", bucking a national trend, London's Police and Crime Committee has heard.

Latest figures from Prevent show there were more than three times the number of referrals compared to right-wing extremism, the meeting heard.

London Assembly members were putting questions to the Met Police and the Mayor's Office for Policing And Crime.

Met Police Commander Dom Murphy said: "Our focus is where the threat exists."

Prevent is a key part of the UK's counter-terrorism strategy and places public bodies, including schools and the police, under a legal duty to identify people who may turn to extremism, and intervene in their lives before it is too late.

But in a recent highly critical independent review, Prevent was said to have "apparently failed" repeatedly to identify attackers.

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