MI5: AQ "enclaves" in three British cities planning attacks

The document does state, however, that the Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre, which is based in MI5’s headquarters at Thames House in London, estimates that there are “some thousands of extremists in the UK committed to supporting Jihadi activities, either in the UK or abroad”…

Although the document specifically names London, Birmingham and south east England as areas of extremist activity, MI5 believe that the threat posed by Islamist extremists comes from across the UK. In an attempt to deal with the growing number of terrorists, MI5 now has nine regional offices and has almost doubled its staff numbers from 1,800 in 2001 to 3,500 today…

Patrick Mercer, the Tory MP for Newark, said al-Qaeda now had support in large parts of the country, especially around Luton which was the spot where the 7/7 terrorists assembled before travelling to London to mount the Tube bombings.