British soldier killed in London

British police officers stop a car carrying a banner saying 'We are British, stand together, stand strong' outside the Royal Artillery Barracks in the southeast London district of Woolwich, close to where a soldier was killed. (Facundo Arrizabalaga / EPA / May 23, 2013)

LONDON -- Scotland Yard has announced the arrest of two new suspects in the case of a young soldier who was hacked to death on a London street in an apparent terrorist attack.

The new suspects, a man and a woman, both 29, were arrested on suspicion of conspiring to murder. Investigators gave no further information Thursday.

Officers also searched several homes believed to be connected to the two men who allegedly killed the off-duty soldier in front of stunned bystanders and spouted Islamic political statements before being shot and wounded by police.

The dead soldier was Lee Rigby, 25, a member of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers who had seen active duty in Afghanistan, Britain’s defense ministry said. Rigby’s battalion is based in barracks next to the site of Wednesday’s attack, in the Woolwich district of southeast London.

“We have lost a brave soldier,” Prime Minister David Cameron said, adding: “The people who did this were trying to divide us. They should know something like this will only bring us together and make us stronger.”

British news outlets reported that both suspected assailants had previously come to the notice of security agencies but were not judged to be planning an attack.

The BBC named one of the alleged attackers as 28-year-old Michael Adebolajo, a British citizen of Nigerian descent who the broadcaster said came from a devout Christian family but converted to Islam.

Adebolajo was identified as the man seen in videos brandishing knives in his bloodied hands after the attack and declaring the killing to be payback for the deaths of Muslims in countries where the British have deployed troops.

His alleged accomplice, who police said is 22 years old, has not been identified.

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