News from Europe

Islamic State supporter admits plot to blow up St Paul’s Cathedral and nearby hotel

A female supporter of Islamic State plotted to plant a bomb under the dome of St Paul’s Cathedral during a packed service in a bid to kill as many people as she could. Safiyya Amira Shaikh, 36, was caught by undercover officers last year as she planned to plant two explosive devices in central London, one at the historic cathedral and one at a nearby hotel. She admitted planning to carry out the devastating terrorist attack after having pledged allegiance to Isis.


A supporter of the Islamic State terror group has pleaded guilty to plotting to bomb St Paul’s Cathedral and the central London hotel where she was staying during her scoping trips. Safiyya Amira Shaikh, 36, from Hayes, Middlesex, admitted preparation of terrorist acts and dissemination of terrorist publications at a hearing at the Old Bailey.

The charge states that Shaikh made contact with someone who could prepare explosives and went to scope out the historic site and a hotel as locations to plant bombs.

The Old Bailey heard yesterday how Shaikh, carried out reconnaissance visits to the cathedral to discover the most effective way of evading security measures and find the best place to plant a bomb at Christmas or Easter.

She prepared the words of a pledge of allegiance to the group, also known as Isis or Daesh, between August 2019 and October 2019.

She also shared terrorist documents via groups using the Telegram messaging app over the same period.

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