Osama Bin Laden: Death a relief in Leeds ‘terror suburb’

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The death of Osama bin Laden came as a relief in Beeston, Leeds - home to several of the al Qaida-inspired London bombers.

Fifty-two innocent people died on July 7 2005 when suicide bombers detonated devices on three London Tube trains and a bus in the city.

Today many residents in Beeston said they were pleased bin Laden was dead, but thought it would make little difference to the threat from al Qaida.

Mother-of-one Louise Silverman, 19, said: “He was a terrorist and he got what he deserved.”

Melanie Wilkinson, 32, a postgraduate student, said: “He (bin Laden) will go down in history as one of the worst terrorists who brought death and fear to thousands of people, you have to welcome the news.

“Whether we are safer because of his death remains to be seen.”

The south Leeds area of Beeston gained an unwanted nationwide reputation in 2005 with the revelation that it was home to two of the London bombers - ringleader Mohammed Siddique Khan and Shehzad Tanweer.

Another of the bombers, Hasib Hussain, grew up in the Holbeck area of Leeds and met Khan through a mosque in Beeston, Leeds, in around 2001.

The fourth bomber, Jermaine Lindsay, grew up in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire.

Local businessman Jon Reid, 36, said: “It is a bit of good news which may bring some relief to the families who lost loved ones.

“If you live by the sword, you die by the sword. He was a terrorist, what more can you say?”

Another resident, who would only give his name as Imran, added: “I think it is good news but I think we need to see some proof that he is dead.

“You can’t just trust the Americans in everything they say. It is a very symbolic moment for the US, but it won’t mean much to people in Beeston.”

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