Father of suspect in British MP’s slaying ‘traumatized’ as police continue questioning

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The father of a man arrested for stabbing a British MP during a meeting with local voters has told British media that he is shocked and “hurt” by his son’s arrest, as police suspect him under terrorism laws. Continues questioning.

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According to the Sunday Times, Herbie Ali Kulne, a former adviser to the Prime Minister of Somalia, said he was met by counter-terrorism police.

“I feel so hurt. It’s not something I expected or even dreamed of.”

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British officials did not release the suspect in Friday’s murder of 69-year-old Conservative MP David Ames, but British media reported the suspect was Ali Herbie Ali, 25, believed to be a British citizen of Somali heritage.

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Ames, a longtime MP, was stabbed several times during a routine meeting with his constituents at a church in Leigh-on-Sea, about 40 miles (62 km) east of London.

The Metropolitan Police described the attack as terrorism and said preliminary investigations suggest “a possible motivation linked to Islamic extremism,” without giving details.

It is not clear whether, if any, the suspect had links to Ames.

Police have been given additional time to interrogate the suspect, who was arrested on suspicion of murder but is yet to be charged. The BBC and others reported that the suspect had been sent a few years ago to a government program aimed at deterring people from supporting extremism, but said he was not a formal subject of interest to security services.

Many in the seaside town of Leh-on-Sea have paid tribute to Ames, the father of five children who has served in parliament since 1983 and was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2015. A church service is later planned in the city. Sunday. In north London, police investigating the murder continued to search an apartment and another address as officers stood guard outside.

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Friday’s killing sparked renewed concern about the risk to politicians regarding their work. The attack comes five years after Labor lawmaker Joe Cox was murdered by a far-right extremist in his constituency in West Yorkshire.

Home Secretary Priti Patel said on Sunday that officials are reviewing security arrangements for MPs, and measures being considered include police protection during regular meetings, which is called “surgery” between MPs and their constituents. ” is referred to as.

But Patel said he did not believe the AIIMS murder would change the relationship between MPs and their voters.

“It should never, ever, break the link between an elected representative and his democratic role, the responsibility and the duty of those elected to him,” she told Sky News on Sunday.

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House of Commons Speaker Lindsay Hoyle said she is working closely with the Home Office and police to identify ways to improve the security of lawmakers. But, like Patel, he said, “we must not hide.”

“The essence of being a parliamentarian (member of parliament) is to help and look after our constituents. They are the people who chose us to represent them, so surely making ourselves available to them is the cornerstone of our democracy? Hoyle wrote in the Sunday newspapers in The Observer and Mail.

The Council of Somali Organizations, which works with Somali communities across the UK, condemned the killing, saying it was “an insult to all our values ​​and our democratic society.”

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