The head of MI5 has said "a step-change" in the UK's counter terrorism defences in the wake of 7/7 helped prevent "Al Qaeda’s most ambitious plot".
Andrew Parker, Director General of the security service, said: "A year later we detected and, with partner agencies, prevented Al Qaeda’s most ambitious plot - to bring down multiple airliners on US cities using liquid bombs on flights from London.
"Thousands would have died. I’m not sure we would have detected it without the uplift that followed 7/7".
He added: "These and other appalling acts are attempted by individuals who have grown up here but decided for whatever twisted reasons to identify their own country as the enemy.
"They are a tiny fraction of the population. But the continuing fact that some people, born in the UK, with all the opportunities and freedoms that modern Britain offers, can nonetheless make those sorts of warped choices presents a serious societal and security challenge."
He added that the "terrible events" which killed 52 people in 2005 are "enduring reminders of the reality of what MI5 is striving every day to prevent".
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