The security services are monitoring “thousands” of terrorist suspects in London, Boris Johnson has disclosed, suggesting the threat from Islamist extremists may be far greater than has previously been admitted.
Until now, it was thought that the main danger came from around 500 jihadis who have travelled to Syria and Iraq from the UK to join Isil or al-Qaeda fighters, around half of whom have returned to Britain.
But the Mayor of London suggested the threat from home-grown terrorist plots was far more widespread than the relatively small numbers of extremists who have gone abroad to fight.
In an interview with The Daily Telegraph, he said: “In London we’re very very vigilant and very very concerned. Every day – as you saw recently, we had to raise the threat level – every day the security services are involved in thousands of operations.
“There are probably in the low thousands of people that we are monitoring in London.”