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Bombers staged dry run before 7/7 attacks: Police

London Police released new CCTV images on Tuesday of the bombers at Luton station, and then at King's Cross station in London on the morning of June 28.

india Updated: Sep 21, 2005 14:09 IST

Three of the four London suicide bombers staged a dry run of their devastating attacks nine days before the July 7 episode, police said.

Detectives reconstructed the bombers' movements after studying thousands of hours of film as part of the probe into the blasts which killed 52 people.

They released new CCTV images on Tuesday of the bombers at Luton station, about 40 km from here and then at King's Cross station in London on the morning of June 28.

The images showed Mohammad Sidique Khan, Shehzad Tanweer and Germaine Lindsay on an apparent reconnaissance mission to London.

They were dressed in trainers, casual trousers and T-shirts and two of them were carrying rucksacks.

Police traced the movements after recovering tickets and receipts from houses connected to the bombers which pointed to their trip.

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Peter Clarke, head of Scotland Yard's anti-terrorist branch, who revealed the bombers' dummy run, said the investigation would carry on for months. More than 3,000 plus witness statements had been gathered and 80,000 CCTV tapes analysed.

It was also revealed that the bombers used a peroxide-based explosive to carry out the bombings.

Senior anti-terrorist detectives said that they had found two other viable devices in a car used by the bombers which was left parked at Luton station.

Two bottles of peroxide explosive encased in nails were found in a bag under the front passenger seat of a silver Nissan Micra which three of the bombers had used to travel to Luton on the day of the attacks.

Sidique Khan and Tanweer met Lindsay at Luton station at around 8.10 am. They bought tickets and caught a Thameslink train to King's Cross.

Further CCTV footage recovered by police shows them arriving at 8.55 am. There was a further sighting of the three at Baker Street at midday.

They were captured again on CCTV leaving King's Cross at 12.50 pm before arriving back in Luton at 1.40 pm.

Detectives are anxious to find out what the men were doing during their three-hour trip to London, and in particular, whether they met anyone.

"The implication is that they were possibly conducting reconnaissance on that day. We know that is part of a terrorist's methodology, to check timings, layout and security precautions," Clarke said.

"We are trying to reconstruct their movements as far as we can on that day. What we want to know is where else they went and did they meet anybody else while they were in London?

They show three of the four bombers apparently relaxed and in casual clothes mingling among ordinary commuters just nine days before they leashed death and carnage on the capital.

First Published: Sep 21, 2005 14:09 IST