UK authorities are asserting that they are not pressing panic buttons, at least not yet, in the matter of employing overseas doctors or taking in students from countries under the scanner for terrorist networks.
All eight people arrested in the aftermath of two bungled car bombings here last week are from the medical profession, a British police official said Tuesday, rattling a national heath service that has long relied on foreign doctors to fill its understaffed hospitals.
The seven men are physicians, according to the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, while the lone woman, the wife of one, is a laboratory technician. The police are now working to unravel links and prior contacts within this far-flung expatriate medical circle.
For the British public, the prospect of highly educated professionals as terror suspects is a chilling departure from the home-grown Muslim terrorists, many with family roots in Pakistan, who have been implicated in previous conspiracies here.
Britain remained jittery on Tuesday, with the police evacuating parts of Londons Heathrow Airport after a security scare, stranding hundreds of passengers in a rainstorm. They also carried out controlled explosions near a subway station here and outside a mosque in Glasgow.
Meantime fresh details emerged about the men linked to the plot to detonate two car-bombs in Londons West End, and an attack the following day at the Glasgow airport, in which two men rammed a Jeep Cherokee into the terminal and set it ablaze.
The driver of the vehicle was another doctor, named Khalid Ahmed, according to an official with knowledge of the investigation. Footage of Dr. Ahmed after the incident, shown on British television on Tuesday, appeared to show a young man. He was severely burned in the fire, and is under guard in a hospital near Glasgow.
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