A summary of today’s developments
- Sources have confirmed to the Guardian that the suspect’s name is Ali Harbi Ali, 25.
- Scotland Yard said the suspect was subsequently further detained under section 41 of the Terrorism Act 2000 and he is now being held at a London police station.
- Detectives were granted a warrant of further detention at Westminster magistrates court, allowing them to keep the man in custody until 22 October, when the warrant expires.
- Officers attended three addresses in the London area and conducted searches as part of their investigation.
- A candlelit vigil in honour of Sir David Amess was held this evening at Belfairs Park.
- Home secretary Priti Patel said had held meetings with the Commons Speaker, Sir Lindsay Hoyle, police and security services to ensure appropriate measures are in place for MPs.
- Liberal Democrats will not stand candidates in the Southend-West by-election. Sky News reported Labour will also not field a candidate.
The Speaker of the House of Commons, Sir Lindsay Hoyle, has demanded “an end to hatred” against MPs and a kinder form of political discourse following the fatal stabbing of Sir David Amess, as evidence mounts of the shocking scale of intimidation and threats suffered daily by elected politicians and their staff.
In a highly unusual intervention for a Commons Speaker, Hoyle makes the appeal as he writes in the Observer. He describes the late Tory MP and father of five as a friend who would regularly drop into his office for a chat, and as “a man who found a connection with everyone, no matter their background”.
On Saturday, political leaders put on a defiant show of unity and solidarity, with Boris Johnson and Sir Keir Starmer, along with Hoyle and the home secretary, Priti Patel, together laying wreaths at Belfairs Methodist church in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, where Amess died after being stabbed repeatedly as he held his constituency surgery on Friday. A man was arrested shortly after the attack and remains in police custody.
Sir David Amess was a regular in our office. Not because, like many members of parliament, he wanted to secure a debate or ask for something, but because he genuinely liked a gossip and a chat with my staff.
Sources confirm name to Guardian
Sources have confirmed to the Guardian that the suspect’s name is Ali Harbi Ali, 25.
Among the numerous floral tributes to Sir David by the police cordon on Eastwood Road North, where the church is, one from his cousins read: “RIP David. Thinking of your lovely family.
“Can’t believe this has actually happened. Will always love you. Cousins Moira and Pat.”
Another family message, from second cousins, read: “I am so sad to hear the news of this brutal attack. You was a great man, husband, father, and member of our family. “You will be missed. Rest in peace.”
Southend borough council has marked the candlelit vigil for Sir David Amess by posting some pictures from the event.
Suspect detained under Terrorism Act – police
Scotland Yard said on Saturday evening: “Late on Friday, whilst in police custody, the man was subsequently further detained under section 41 of the Terrorism Act 2000 and he is now being held at a London police station.
“On Saturday, detectives were granted a warrant of further detention at Westminster magistrates court, allowing them to keep the man in custody until 22 October, when the warrant expires.
“As part of the fast-paced investigation, officers have attended three addresses in the London area and conducted searches. One of these searches has concluded and the others are ongoing. A postmortem examination has taken place today.”
Suspect reportedly named Ali Harbi Ali
PA Media said on Saturday night that it understands “the name the police have for the suspect is Ali Harbi Ali”.
Shortly after 9am on Saturday, Boris Johnson and Keir Starmer bent to lay wreaths and, united briefly by grief, turned grimly from the Essex church where Conservative MP David Amess had been killed less than 24 hours earlier.
Accompanied by the rumble of helicopters, the political leaders soon left Leigh-on-Sea and a community searching for answers.
Hundreds of people attended a candlelit vigil in memory of MP Sir David Amess.
Southend councillor Alan Dear addressed those gathered in a circle around dozens of glowing candles on the grass.
“For me, and I know for all of you because you’re here, it’s been a terrible 24 hours for all of us,” he said.
He went on: “For me, (Sir David) was a good friend, and I know he was a good friend to all of you here.
“He spent 40 years of his life caring for the constituents of Basildon and Southend.
He was a very kind, loving, gentle man. A gentleman and a gentle man.
“He’s a person I will never forget. He’s always been available.
“If you ever needed help he was there. I know he’s helped many of you here this evening.”
The Liberal Democrats have confirmed they will not be putting a candidate forward for the Southend West byelection.
The party is set to follow the principle established after Jo Cox’s murder in 2016, when the major parties declined to nominate candidates for the subsequent Batley and Spen byelection.