Liverpool explosion: Man killed in terrorist attack outside hospital named as Emad Al Swealmeen

ITV News UK Editor Paul Brand reports on what we know so far about the explosion and the police investigation

A terror suspect who is believed to have detonated the explosion in a taxi outside Liverpool Women’s Hospital on Sunday has been named by police as 32-year-old Emad Al Swealmeen.He was the passenger in the taxi when his device exploded shortly before 11am on Remembrance Sunday. Police have declared the blast a terrorist incident, but said the motive is “yet to be understood.”

Emad Al Swealmeen Credit: ITV News

Taxi driver David Perry escaped from the taxi without any serious injuries and has been hailed a hero for preventing the passenger from leaving the car.

ITV News has obtained pictures of Al Swealmeen, who police say died in the explosion.

Police said they believe Al Swealmeen had lived at the Sutcliffe Street address and had recently rented the house on Rutland Avenue.

ITV News understands Al Swealmeen had been receiving help from a local asylum charity until as recently as April. It is believed his asylum status was still pending at the time of his death.Detective Chief Inspector Andrew Meeks said: "Our focus is the Rutland Avenue address where we have continued to recover significant items."

What has happened since the investigation began?

Soon after the explosion police made three arrests in the Kensington area of Liverpool on Sunday, with another arrest made on Monday morning.

Counter Terrorism Police North West said the men – aged 29, 26, 21 and 20 – were arrested under the Terrorism Act in connection with the incident.

But police confirmed on Monday evening that all four men have been released from police custody without charge.

Assistant Chief Constable Russ Jackson said: "The investigation continues to move at a fast pace with investigative teams working through the night.

"We have made significant progress since Sunday morning and have a much greater understanding of the component parts of the device, how they were obtained and how the parts are likely to have been assembled."

Police added they had recovered important evidence from the address which is "becoming central to the investigation", but it could be "many weeks until we are confident on our understanding of what has taken place".

Credit: PA

On Sunday afternoon a heavy police presence swept over Rutland Avenue, the road where Mr Perry picked up Al Swealmeen.

Houses on the road were evacuated while police officers with the word 'Negotiator' were seen nearby.Police also confirmed on Monday they had carried out a controlled explosion of a device found in the property on Rutland Avenue.

What do we know about Emad Al Swealmeen?

In response to the attack, the government raised the UK terrorism threat level to severe, meaning an attack is highly likely.

Home Secretary Priti Patel said the threat level has been raised because there have been two attacks in the space of a month - the last being the stabbing of MP Sir David Amess.

After the threat level was raised Boris Johnson urged the public to be "vigilant."

The Prime Minister told a Downing Street press conference: "As you know those gradations – substantial, severe – they bump around and what we’re really saying to the public as a result of what happened in Liverpool is that everybody’s got to be vigilant."

CCTV from outside a Liverpool hospital shows the moment an explosion ripped through a taxi

This video contains distressing images

Mr Johnson also praised Mr Perry earlier on Monday for displaying "incredible presence of mind and bravery."

Mr Perry has since been released from hospital but his wife has said he is doing "ok but is extremely sore."

In a Facebook post Rachel Perry added he was "lucky to be alive" and she thanked all doctors and police who had helped them.

In a CCTV clip of the incident, a black taxi is seen approaching the building before a blast sends debris flying and thick smoke billowing from the car.

The people of Liverpool are still trying to comprehend what happened on Sunday

A man can be seen escaping out of the driver car door while people nearby rush to the scene, as the car is engulfed in flames. Speaking at a news conference the Head of Counter Terrorism Policing North West Russ Jackson said the passenger appears to have made an improvised explosive device.

“It is not clear what the motivation for this incident is," Mr Jackson said.

He added: “The reason why he then took it to the Women’s Hospital is unknown, as is the reason for its sudden explosion."

An eyewitness who was on his way to visit his newborn baby tells ITV News what he saw

Liverpool Women’s Hospital said visiting access had been restricted “until further notice”. Patients were diverted to other hospitals where possible during most of Sunday.

In a statement, the hospital said: “Anyone with appointments at the hospital will notice an increased security and police presence on site.”