British police say Liverpool attacker Emad al-Swealmeen acted alone, built bomb for months

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Nov. 17 (UPI) — Counter-terrorism authorities said Wednesday that the man who blew himself up in an attack outside a British hospital this week was planning the bombing for at least seven months.

Police said the bomber, Emad al-Swealmeen, died in the blast that was set off while he sat inside a taxi cab outside the hospital in Liverpool on Sunday.

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In an update Wednesday, investigators said that al-Swealmeen, 32, was actively buying components for the bomb in April. They also said it’s believed that he acted alone.

Al-Swealmeen was the only one who died in the attack. The taxi driver was slightly injured. It was initially reported that the bomber was one of four people arrested after the blast. They have been released without charges.

Police have said the attack was terrorist in nature, but al-Swealmeen’s motive is not yet clear. Authorities have said he had a history of mental illness.

Al-Swealmeen was living in Liverpool as an asylum seeker, but his efforts to stay permanently in Britain were not approved. It’s believed he was born in Iraq to Iraqi and Syrian parents.

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Police are still investigating al-Swealmeen’s time in Britain since he arrived 2014. He converted to Christianity from Islam during his time in Liverpool.