MPs and peers on the Intelligence and Security Committee investigated the intelligence basis for the strike and said in a report yesterday that Khan had posed a very serious threat.
The ISC, which had high-level access to intelligence reports, said Khan was a prolific radicaliser, recruiter and attack-planner for Islamic State. Its report said: ‘He orchestrated numerous plots to murder large numbers of UK citizens and those of our allies, as part of a wider terrorist group which considers itself at war with the West.’
Khan died with Ruhul Amin, another British jihadi, when an RAF Reaper drone blasted their vehicle near the IS stronghold of Raqqa on August 21, 2015. It was the first time the UK had conducted a lethal attack using a remotely-piloted aircraft outside regular military conflict. Three days later a US drone killed British extremist Junaid Hussain.
Khan, who appeared in an IS recruitment video in June 2014, was said to be part of a jihadi internet warfare cell.
Ministers at the time said he had plotted to bring bloodshed to public commemorations attended by war veterans and dignitaries including the Queen.
Khan was linked to some of the seven thwarted terror plots against the UK in 2015. Because it was unlikely Khan would leave Syria, MI5 told Mr Cameron: ‘There are no other credible opportunities for us to comprehensively disrupt Khan’s attack planning beyond a lethal strike.’
Tory MP Dominic Grieve, the ISC chairman, said yesterday: ‘Over the course of nine months he, alongside another plotter (Junaid Hussain), encouraged multiple operatives around the world to conduct attacks against the UK and our allies.
‘They provided practical instructions for the manufacture of bombs, and information on targets. We are in no doubt that Reyaad Khan posed a very serious threat to the UK.’
Mr Grieve said it was disappointing the committee had not been shown some key documents it considered relevant to the decision to kill Khan. The Government said this would have taken the inquiry beyond its focus on the nature of his threat
Source: Mail Online