“There’s no suggestion ALL these missing guys are terrorists. But we have to think of nightmare scenarios. If the BMA can’t maintain records and have lost contact with potentially risky people, it could have serious repercussions for our nation’s security.”
Quite so. “132 refugees are missing in the UK,” by James Mulholland for News of the World, December 20:
More than 130 refugee doctors have disappeared in Britain “” sparking fears there could be MORE terror cells operating in the NHS.
British Medical Association watchdogs have admitted to losing contact with 132 medics from Islamic terror hotspots like Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Somalia.
The revelation comes days after Scots-based doctor Bilal Abdulla was jailed for a minimum of 32 years for masterminding the attacks at Glasgow Airport and in London in June last year.
Intelligence sources say MI5 is monitoring at least 200 potential terror gangs throughout Britain.
One insider said last night: “Not every doctor who comes into Britain is a fanatic intent on causing terror “” but after the Glasgow attack, there should be tighter controls. It seems there are a number of doctors who have simply disappeared from the BMA radar.”
Iraqi Abdulla, 29, worked at the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Paisley while he plotted to cause mass murder at the airport and at the Tiger Tiger club in London. According to figures released in June, there are 1,199 doctors registered on a database of refugee medics seeking work in the UK.
Three hundred and fifteen hail from Iraq, while 49 come from Afghanistan.
Another 111 come from Iran while 47 Somalians and 20 Algerians are also registered. The BMA has “lost touch” with 132 of them. A security insider said: “There’s no suggestion ALL these missing guys are terrorists. But we have to think of nightmare scenarios. If the BMA can’t maintain records and have lost contact with potentially risky people, it could have serious repercussions for our nation’s security.”
Terrorism expert Dr David Capitanchik said more care had to be taken in monitoring doctors from countries with a tradition of Islamic extremism.
He added: “In the past hospitals have tended to focus more on looking at people’s medical qualifications. But attitudes now need to change.”
Last night a Home Office spokesman refused to comment on the medics.
He added: “We do not elaborate on specific plots or individuals.”
The BMA denied those classed as “˜missing” were a risk to security.
A spokesman said: “These are professional individuals. By us losing touch with them, it could mean they are more likely to be settling into British society than planning some kind of atrocity.”
As the prosecutor remarked at the start of Bilal Abdulla’s trial, “who would have suspected two doctors to have been involved in such planning?” The perception of low odds for trouble doesn’t excuse the BMA from its responsibility to keep track of its personnel.