Everything We Know About The Woolwich Killers
One man, identified as Michael Adebolajo, was reportedly known to a banned Islamist organization.
On Wednesday police shot and arrested two men after they attacked and killed an unnamed solider in the middle of a busy street in Woolwich, South East London. They were carrying knives, meat cleavers and a firearm.
As the two men recover in hospital, details are slowly beginning to emerge of who they are and what motivated them.
They are Michael Adebolajo (left), originally of Romford, Essex, and Michael Oluwatobi Adebowale (right), 22, of Greenwich, South East London.
Both are believed to be British-born Muslims of Nigerian descent. Senior Whitehall sources have told the BBC that both men were known to security services for their radical views, although at this stage neither are thought to be linked to terror groups and were not under surveillance before the attack.
The Guardian has obtained information on Michael Olumide Adebolajo, the man who appeared on the vast majority of this morning's newspapers holding a bloody meat cleaver.
He was born in Lambeth in 1984 and attended Marshalls Park school in the Harold Hill area of the town. He was raised with his one brother and one sister by Christian parents, who are of Nigerian origin. Adebolajo also attended Greenwich University between 2004 and 2005. He is believed to have converted to Islam about ten years ago.
For more information and accounts from his friends, read the full Guardian report.
"He was a pleasant, quiet guy."
The Independent has been told by the former leader of a banned Islamist organisation that Adebolajo also went by the name Mujahid.
Anjem Choudary, who lectured for the group, Al Muhajiroun, said Mujahid or 'Michael' had converted to Islam in 2003, but stopped attending meetings two years ago. He said:
[Adebolajo] was a pleasant, quiet guy. He reverted to Islam in about 2003. He was just a completely normal guy. He was interested in Islam, in memorising the Koran. He disappeared about two years ago. I don't know what influences he has been under since then.
Choudary denied that Adebolajo could have been radicalised by his teachings, instead blaming the proliferation Al Qaeda-linked material on the internet.