Paddington and Westminster Tube stations could have been 7/7 targets
Paddington and Westminster Tube stations may have been among the initial targets of the 7/7 bombers, an inquest heard.
This shocking new detail was revealed by Hugo Keith QC, the lead counsel to the inquests into the deaths of the 52 victims of the July terror attacks being held at the High Court.
In his opening statement yesterday, Mr Keith told the court he had seen a piece of paper found in the passport of Jermaine Lindsay, one of the four bombers, which mentioned journey times to both Paddington railway station and Westminster Underground station.
He also suggested that the terrorist gang may have been planning to put their deadly plans into action a day earlier, targeting the crowds who were gathering for the announcement that London had been awarded the Olympic Games.
But it appears that the attack was postponed after Mohammad Sidique Khan, the group’s ringleader, accompanied his pregnant wife to the hospital after she suffered a miscarriage.
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At 4.35am on July 6, 2005, Khan sent a text message to one his fellow conspirators, Shezhad Tanweer, cancelling a meeting.
He wrote: “Having a major problem. Can’t make time. Will ring you when I get it sorted. Wait at home.”
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The men went on to launch their bombing campaign the next day on July 7, detonating devices on three Tube trains at Aldgate, Edgware Road and Russell Square, and on a bus at Tavistock Square.
The destruction they wreaked killed 52 people and injured more than 700 others.
Mr Keith added: “They were acts of merciless savagery which could only outline the sheer inhumanity of the perpetrators.”
The inquests follow a five year campaign by the friends and relatives of those who died for an independent inquiry to examine whether the bombings could have been prevented.
In an emotional start to the hearings, the names of the 52 victims were read out and Coroner Lady Justice Hallett requested a minute’s silence in their memory.