Westminster killer’s family apologize to victims of London attack
The wife of the man who killed four people in an attack on the U.K. Parliament last week said Tuesday that she was “shocked and saddened” by the actions of Khalid Masood, expressing her condolences for the victims and their families.
In a statement issued through the police, Masood’s wife, Rohey Hydara, said: “I am saddened and shocked by what Khalid has done. I totally condemn his actions. I express my condolences to the families of the victims that have died, and wish a speedy recovery to all the injured. I would like to request privacy for our family, especially the children, at this difficult time.”
Hydara is thought to have lived with Masood since 2010. She was among those arrested in the wake of the attack but has since been released and completely cleared of any involvement in it. The Telegraph reported on Sunday that Masood, killed by police in the attack, had lied to Hydara, telling her he was traveling to Saudi Arabia before carrying out the attack.
Masood, born Adrian Elms and also known as Adrian Ajao, took just 82 seconds to kill four people in the attack last week. He drove across Westminster Bridge in a hired car, knocking down and injuring 50 people before driving the car into the fence surrounding the Houses of Parliament. He then fatally stabbed a policeman before being shot dead by another officer.
Hydara’s comments follow those of Masood’s mother, Janet Ajao, who said Monday she was “deeply shocked, saddened, and numbed by the actions my son has taken that have killed and injured innocent people in Westminster.” She added that she had “shed many tears” for the victims, and said she did “not condone his actions or support the beliefs he held that led to him committing this atrocity.”
The so-called Islamic State initially claimed credit for the attack, but Scotland Yard Monday ruled out any direct link between Masood’s actions and the terrorist group. The deputy assistant commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Neil Basu, who is also the senior national coordinator for U.K. counterterrorism policing, said that there was no evidence Masood had discussed the planning of his attack with anyone else.
Basu added that the main line of inquiry now was the messages the attacker sent just prior to carrying out the atrocity. According to reports, Masood was active on WhatsApp just before he drove onto Westminster Bridge, and on Sunday U.K. Home Secretary Amber Rudd called on Facebook — which owns WhatsApp — to stop giving terrorists a “secret space to communicate.”
Cover: ASSOCIATED PRESS