Anti-terror police in London have foiled a suspected plot to launch an Islamic State attack in Britain after arresting two men.
Counter terror officers launched an early morning raid and swooped on the pair in west London, arresting both on suspicion of being involved in the ‘preparation of terrorist acts.’
A 19-year-old was detained on suspicion of preparing terrorist acts and a 20-year-old was arrested on suspicion of funding terrorism and failure to disclose information regarding an act of terrorism, Scotland Yard said.
Houses in west and south-west London and the Thames Valley are being searched while vehicles in the same areas are also being inspected.
The Met’s operation today is understood to be ‘significant’ – but Scotland Yard will not release any more details at this time.
MailOnline understands that the threat could have been to attack several sites across the UK – not a lone-wolf attack.
The older man was also held on suspicion of preparing acts of terrorism relating to a separate investigation by the South East Counter Terrorism Unit.
Both suspects, from London, are in custody following a pre-planned raid on a west London address by the Metropolitan Police’s Counter Terrorism Command and the South East Counter Terrorism Unit.
Another man, aged 19, was arrested in south-east London on suspicion of a religiously aggravated offence in a separate matter and remains in custody, police said.
Officers searched addresses and vehicles in west and south-east London and the Thames Valley area following the arrests.
The current terrorist threat level in Britain is considered severe, meaning that an attack is highly likely.
Mark Rowley, the Met’s anti-terror chief, has said that the force is having to arrest a person every day to foil terror attacks.
Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan Howe has said it is ‘when, not if’, the UK will be hit by ISIS terrorists.
The arrests came two days after Britain’s most notorious hate preacher Anjem Choudary was jailed after two decades of laughing at the law.
His extremist sermons spawned atrocities, beheadings and bomb plots and radicalised children as young as five.
He is also believed to have inspired at least 110 Britons into committing terrorist acts. Police also think he helped encourage up to 850 fanatics to travel to Syria to fight for Islamic State.