Reyaad Khan was a 'prolific attack planner' against UK before he was killed by RAF drone strike

Ben Farmer
Reyaad Khan and Ruhul Amin were both killed in a 2015 RAF drone strike

A British jihadi killed in an unprecedented RAF drone strike in Syria was plotting attacks that could have led to “a very significant loss of life" in Britain, MPs have found.

Reyaad Khan was a prolific recruiter and attack planner for Islamic State, and intelligence reports indicated he posed a "very serious threat" to the UK.

The former promising student from Cardiff “orchestrated numerous plots to murder large numbers of UK citizens and those of our allies, as part of a wider terrorist group which considers itself at war with the West," according to the assessment from the Intelligence and Security Committee (ISC).

Khan was killed by a strike from targeted by Reaper drone in August 2015 in the Raqqah area of Syria.

The operation that killed the 21-year-old was the first time that the UK had conducted a lethal drone strike against a terrorist target outside of participation in a military campaign.

While Khan was the target of the attack, two other individuals travelling in the same vehicle were also killed, including Ruhul Amin, another UK national.

The committee’s report published on Wednesday provided the first detailed account of the evidence amassed on Khan before the strike.

Dominic Grieve MP, chairman, said: "In terms of the severity of the threat posed by Reyaad Khan, it appears from the 25 intelligence reports and two formal intelligence assessments that we have seen, that Khan was a prolific recruiter and attack planner."

Alongside another plotter, Junaid Hussain, Khan "encouraged multiple operatives around the world to conduct attacks against the UK and our allies" over the course of nine months, Mr Grieve said.

He added: "They provided practical instructions for the manufacture of bombs, and information on targets."

Hussain, 21, from Birmingham, died in a US air strike three days after Khan was killed.

Another intelligence document describes how Khan was "prominent in attack planning on behalf of Daesh; directly inciting individuals to conduct attacks".

The committee's report disclosed that Khan and Hussain were connected to several of seven major plots thwarted in the UK in 2015.

It said: "It is to the agencies' credit that their investigation of Khan's activities revealed these plots which they were then able to disrupt, thereby avoiding what could have been a very significant loss of life."

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