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Blair shocked 'bombers' were British

PM outlines four-point plan to combat terror attacks



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LONDON, England (CNN) -- Prime Minister Tony Blair has expressed his shock that the four men believed to have carried out last week's deadly terrorist attacks on London's transit system were British nationals.

But speaking to parliament on Wednesday, Blair also urged Britons to react calmly to the bombings that killed at least 52 people, and he condemned attacks against Muslims.

"Particularly with the shock of knowing that those that have perpetrated this were actually born and brought up in this country, I think it is particularly important we recognize the worldwide dimension of this," Blair said.

"I would ask for the same measured and calm response from the country that has characterized it since last Thursday," Blair told the House of Commons.

"This is a small group of extremists. Not one who can be ignored, but neither should it define Muslims in Britain who are overwhelmingly law-abiding, decent members of our society," he said Wednesday.

Blair told parliament the country had been united in the face of the bombings and that he wanted to "condemn utterly" race attacks that had come in their wake.

He told the Commons the government had a four-point plan, in which it would:

  • Begin the process of consultation on planned counter-terrorism legislation within the next couple of weeks, with a priority being measures to combat the incitement and instigation of terrorism.
  • Look urgently at how to strengthen the process for excluding from the UK those who incite hatred, and make it easier to deport such people.
  • Start discussions immediately with Muslim leaders on combating "the perverted and poisonous misinterpretation of Islam" which lay behind the attacks.
  • Talk to other nations on how to mobilize the "moderate and true voice of Islam."
  • Blair also said he wanted to send "a word of congratulations to our police and security services for the magnificent work that they have done."

    Britain's interior minister, Home Secretary Charles Clarke, meanwhile warned of further attacks despite police tracing three likely suspects in the bombings to Leeds, northern England.

    "We have to assume there are others who are ready to do the kinds of things that these people did last Thursday," Clarke told the BBC. Clarke is in Brussels for an emergency anti-terrorist meeting of European Union ministers. (Full story)

    Metropolitan Police were back in Leeds, 320 kilometers (200 miles) north of London in West Yorkshire, for a second day searching six sites, three of them the home addresses of three of the men. (Full story)

    On Tuesday, police arrested one man and conducted a controlled explosion to gain entry to one of the homes after questionable material was found. About 60 km north of London, police used another controlled explosion on a car left at a train station in Luton.

    Police confirmed to CNN that one of the suspects was Shahzad Tanweer, 22, of Leeds.

    Deputy Assistant Commissioner Peter Clarke, head of Scotland Yard's anti-terror branch, said Tuesday that the family of one of the men reported him missing several hours after Thursday's blasts, leading investigators to the four men, three of whom were from West Yorkshire.

    All four had arrived in London by train on the morning of the bombings and were seen on closed-circuit television just before 8:30 a.m. at King's Cross station, he said.

    Clarke said personal documents bearing the names of three of the men were found near the train seats where three of the bombs exploded, and that police have "very strong forensic and other evidence" suggesting that one of the Leeds men died on the explosion between the Aldgate and Liverpool stations.

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