‘ISIS backer’ arrested over historic cathedral bomb plot

Woman, 36, is accused of planning to bomb St Paul’s Cathedral in London

FILE PHOTO: Pedestrians use the Millennium Bridge on the South Bank, opposite St Paul's Cathedral, in London, Britain December 27, 2018. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls/File Photo
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An alleged ISIS supporter has been held by British police over a suspected plot to blow up St Paul’s Cathedral in London.

Police say Safiyya Amira Shaikh, 36, carried out a reconnaissance operation for a bombing operation at one of the capital’s most recognisable landmarks and a hotel.

The woman is accused of giving a person two bags in the belief they would be stowed with explosives, the Metropolitan police said in a statement. She is also suspected of preparing a pledge of allegiance to ISIS.

Ms Shaikh, of Hayes, west London, was arrested last week and appeared in court on Wednesday accused of terrorism offences.

The current St Paul’s, with its domed roof, was completed in 1710 after its predecessor was burned down in the 1666 Great Fire of London. A cathedral has stood on the site for more than 1,400 years.