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Police Search House in England Linked to Sweden Bomber


Emergency services on the scene of a car explosion in the center of Stockholm, 11 Dec 2010

Emergency services on the scene of a car explosion in the center of Stockholm, 11 Dec 2010

British police are searching a house just north of London believed to be the family home of the alleged suicide bomber who blew himself up in a busy shopping street in Stockholm Saturday.

Police cordoned off the house in Luton where suspect Taymour Abdelwahab al-Abdaly had lived with his wife and children. No arrests were made, and no hazardous materials were found.

Swedish prosecutor Tomas Lindstrand said Monday that authorities were "98 percent" sure Abdaly was the bomber who died in one of two explosions Saturday. No one else was killed in the blasts.

Lindstrand said Abdaly had bombs strapped to his body and additional explosives in a backpack, and had sent threats referring to "jihad" in an email shortly before his death.

The emails referred to Sweden's military presence in Afghanistan and Swedish cartoonist Lars Vilks whose 2007 drawing of the Prophet Muhammad as a dog angered Muslims around the world.

While in Britain, Abdaly worshipped at the Luton Islamic Center, but left in 2007 after being confronted for his radical views.

Linstrand said it appeared that the bombs Abdaly was carrying detonated prematurely by mistake, killing him but nobody else. An earlier blast in a car registered in Abdaly's name and parked near the shopping street injured two people.

The Swedish prosecutor said if the explosions had all gone off at once, they could have caused very serious damage.

Abdaly was born in the Middle East, had been a Swedish citizen since 1992 and had also lived in Britain for several years. Some press reports said he had been born in Iraq.

Neighbors in Luton last reported seeing Abdaly about two-and-a-half weeks ago. He had studied at a local university, working towards a degree in sports therapy.

Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt called Saturday's blasts a "most worrying attempt at a terrorist attack."

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