- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 7, 2017

London Mayor Sadiq Khan faced a grilling this week by journalist Piers Morgan after admitting that hundreds of jihadists back from Syria are not being tracked by police.

“Good Morning Britain” co-hosts Susanna Reid and Mr. Morgan fired a barrage of questions during a Tuesday interview with London’s mayor, who blamed budgetary constraints for the city’s inability to monitor all citizens back from ISIS battlefields. Mr. Khan said “just over half” of 400 British fighters a back in country after fighting with Islamic terrorists groups.

“Why can’t you instruct the police, why can’t you call [Metropolitan Police Chief] Cressida Dick right now, and say every one of those people that’s come back from a war zone, who’s in London, I want them followed?” Mr. Morgan asked.

“Let me tell you why. Because the Met Police budget, roughly speaking, 15 percent, 20 percent is funded by me, the mayor. The rest comes from central government. If the Met Police is being shrunk and reduced, they’ve got to prioritize and use their resources in a sensible, savvy way.”

Mr. Morgan, incredulous, shot back, “What could be a bigger priority than people coming back from a Syrian battlefield with intent to harm British citizens? Why is it not the number one priority?”

The segment came against the backdrop of last Saturday’s London Bridge attack that killed seven and wounded dozens of others, along with the May 22 Manchester suicide bombing that killed 22.

“Why are these people just allowed to come back in the first place, and then the London mayor doesn’t appear to have a clue where any of them are? I mean, no disrespect to you, but where are they?” asked the host.

“That’s one of the questions that obviously the police services are,” the mayor responded before being cut off.

“But you’re the mayor! Sadiq, you’re the mayor of London.”

Comments for “Good Morning Britain’s” YouTube upload of the interview were disabled. The exchange tallied over 55,000 views in less than 24 hours.

• Douglas Ernst can be reached at dernst@washingtontimes.com.

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