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December 15 - 21 2010


The Telegraph


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μ Letters


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μ Features

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Honeymoon murder Police link Shrien Dewani to second South African killing


WikiLeaks latest Julian Assange denied bail as digital protesters target websites



Nobel no show Winner represented by empty chair at peace prize ceremony

Can aspirin prevent cancer? Professor Karol Sikora on a surprising medical discovery

LOTTO 08/12

LOTTO 11/12

16 14 23 24 25 43 11 15 24 33 43 49

Bonus Ball 48

Bonus Ball 27

There were five winners of Saturday’s £4.6m jackpot and one winner of Wednesday’s £2.4m prize

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The Telegraph

By Duncan Gardham, Marcus Oscarsson and Peter Hutchison AN ISLAMIC suicide bomber who attacked Christmas shoppers in Sweden last weekend is a British university graduate and was living in this country until two weeks ago.

Taimur Abdulwahab alAbdaly tried to set off a car bomb packed with gas canisters in a busy shopping street in Stockholm. The car caught fire and the bomber fled the scene before blowing himself up 300 yards away 15 minutes later, injuring two bystanders.

It emerged on Sunday night that Abdulwahab, who was due to turn 29 on Sunday, was a former physical therapy student at Bedfordshire University in Luton, and that his wife and three young children still live in the town.

MI5 is now investigating possible links with extremists in Luton, whether the bomber was radicalised at the university and claims that he was helped by an extremist group in Yemen, the base for al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

The suicide bombing follows an attempt by Umar Farouq Abdulmutallab, a former student at University College London, to blow himself up last Christmas on a flight to Detroit.

Abdulmutallab had trained in Yemen, but had become increasingly radical during his time in Britain. The security services and police are concerned that British university campuses have become breeding grounds for extremism. Neighbours told The Telegraph on Sunday night that they had last seen Abdulwahab at the 1930s semi-detached house in Luton, Beds, two and a half weeks ago. The couple have two young girls and a baby son. His wife, Mona, a Swedish citizen, is said to run a home beauty company.

Tahir Hussain, 33, a taxi driver who lives nearby, said: “I used to see him around often. He didn’t say much but seemed nice. I used to see him walking with his kids.

“I was shocked when I heard what happened because I never thought he could do such a thing.”

Mr Hussain said that the couple had been living there for a year and that Abdulwahab used to go to Friday prayers at the Islamic Centre in Luton.

The bomber had recently advertised on a Muslim dating site for a second wife, saying he was looking for a “lady 25

30 who lives in UK for marriage”. The site, Muslima. com, said he was born in Baghdad, Iraq, and moved to Sweden in 1992 and then to Britain in 2001 to study for a degree in physical therapy, marrying in 2004.

On his Facebook page, he included a group called Yawm al-Qiyaamah, meaning Day of Judgment, that featured a montage of Tower Bridge in flames.

Reports from Sweden said Abdulwahab was shouting in Arabic and carrying six

Taimur Abdulwahab al-Abdaly, who blew himself up in Stockholm, lived in Luton until just two weeks ago pipe-bombs, one of which exploded, along with a rucksack full of nails and explosives.

A paramedic said the bomber had no injuries to the face or body in general but looked as if he had been carrying something that exploded in his stomach. One witness said the bomber had worked as a sandwich board advertiser in a shopping area.

Carl Bildt, the Swedish foreign minister, said it was “a most worrying attempt at a terrorist attack”, adding that it “failed – but could have been truly catastrophic”.

Theresa May, the Home Secretary, said: “The Swedish government have indicated they believe this was a terrorist attack. We will be talking to them about the details of that attack.”

Abdulwahab’s father, Thamer, 61, who lives in Tranås, south of Stockholm, said his son had been at the family home last Friday.

“After he woke up Saturday morning, he took his car and drove off,” he said.

“He did not say if he was going to Stockholm or elsewhere.”

A Yemeni Islamist website, Shumukh al-Islam, published a photograph of Abdulwahab in dark glasses, saying: “It is our brother, mujahid Taymour Abdel Wahab, who carried out the martyrdom operation in Stockholm.”

Twelve minutes before the bombing last Saturday, a Swedish news agency received a message with two sound files, one in Swedish and one in Arabic, that was also sent to the Swedish Security Police.

The message criticised Swedes’ silence over cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed and Swedish soldiers serving in Afghanistan.

Abdulwahab said: “Now your children, your daughters and your sisters will die as our brothers, our sisters and our children are dying.”

He also asked his family for forgiveness for misleading them about a trip to the Middle East: “I never went to the Middle East to work or to make money, I went for jihad.” He asked his wife to kiss the children on his behalf. “Tell them Daddy loves them,” he added.

By Patrick Hennessy DETAILS of swingeing cuts hitting police, schools, coastguards and roadworks are to be unveiled as ministers usher in the “age of austerity” this week.

Local councils will see their grant payments reduced by an average of about 10 per cent next year as the axe falls on jobs and services.

The number of coastguard stations is to fall from 19 to eight while the search-andrescue service, whose helicopter pilots currently include Prince William, is to be sold to a foreign consortium.

Budgets for repairs and maintenance to schools are expected to dry up, as will money earmarked for road maintenance, including filling in potholes.

The police grant paid to individual forces is set to fall by five per cent next year. Ministers will also signal that the taxpayer will no longer pay the bills, including compensation, in the wake of large-scale outbreaks of animal diseases, such as foot and mouth.

The Telegraph has learnt that a carefully choreographed series of announcements will spell out for the first time how the Whitehall spending cuts will be felt in the community.

Next year, 2011-12, appears to be a particularly painful period with ministers determined to get as much of the bad news out of the way as early as possible so that the overall picture can gradually “improve” in the run-up to the next general election in 2015. ŠThe Department for Transport will propose cutting the number of coastguard stations from 19 to eight – of which only three are likely to operate round the clock. The service is likely to lose around 250 jobs in a £7.5 million saving. Meanwhile, the search-andrescue operation is expected to be “outsourced” to a French-American consortium in a £7billion deal, spelling the end for the Royal Navy’s fleet of 36 ageing Sea King helicopters and their military crews, who currently include the Prince. Š Money paid under the Highway Maintenance Formula for “road conditions” is expected to be phased out over four years – leaving roads with thousands of unrepaired potholes. Š The grant paid from Whitehall to local authorities – which is already to be reduced by 27 per cent by 2014-15 – is set to be cut next year alone by 10 per cent for the average council, with a major impact on services. Authorities in more prosperous areas face larger cuts. ŠMinisters will this week set out cuts to police forces in England and Wales. The overall reduction for next year is expected to be 5 per cent. ŠMichael Gove, the Schools Secretary, will announce this week that the pupil premium — the extra funding provided to schools for about 1.4 million children from the poorest families – will be £430 per pupil next year, a total of £625 million, less than had been expected. The premium will rise to a total payment of £2.5 billion a year by 2014-15. Funding for repairs and maintenance of school buildings is to dry up as more and more capital education spending goes toward new “free schools” and academies. Overall, ministers expect local education authorities to lose funding of about £500 million over the Spending Review period. ŠThe Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs is to publish a report signalling that the Government will no longer pick up the bill for outbreaks of foot and mouth and other animal diseases. Instead a new body will work with farmers to create new funding streams to cover compensation and other payments — possibly through insurance. ŠIn a further cut to the welfare bill, the Independent Living Fund – which makes average payments of £316 a week to help severely disabled people buy care and support – is to be phased out for all claimants by 2015, in a move that may save about £330 million.

George Osborne, the Chancellor, announced in October’s Spending Review that Whitehall departmental budgets would be cut by an average 19 per cent by 2015.