London attacker was in Saudi Arabia 3 times, but not on security officials' radar, says embassy

PHOTO: Londons Metropolitan Police released this image of Khalid Masood on March 24, 2017.PlayMetropolitan Police
WATCH New developments in Wednesday's terror attack in London

London terror attack suspect Khalid Masood visited Saudi Arabia three times -- including two stints teaching English -- but he was not on any security watchlist, the kingdom's London embassy said late Friday.

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"The Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia wishes to clarify that Khalid Masood was in Saudi Arabia from November 2005 to November 2006 and April 2008 to April 2009, when he worked as an English teacher having first obtained a work visa," the embassy said in a statement. "In 2015, he obtained an Umra visa through an approved travel agent and was in the Kingdom from the 3rd-8th March."

Masood was also not on the radar of security officials.

"During his time in Saudi Arabia, Khalid Masood did not appear on the security services' radar and does not have a criminal record in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia," the statement read.

The embassy expressed its condolences to Britain, writing, "Saudi Arabia continues to stand with the United Kingdom during this difficult time and reaffirms its commitment to continue its work with the United Kingdom in any way to assist in the ongoing investigation."

The embassy also took the opportunity to stress its commitment to defeating terrorism.

"The attack in London this week has again demonstrated the importance of international efforts to confront and eradicate terrorism," the embassy said. "At such a time, our ongoing security cooperation is most crucial to the defeat of terrorism and the saving of innocent lives."

Masood's reign of terror began Wednesday after a car he was driving struck pedestrians and three police officers on Westminster Bridge.

The car then crashed into the fence around the Houses of Parliament, and armed with a knife, he attacked an officer who was standing guard.

Masood was shot and killed by police.

Four people -- including police officer Keith Palmer -- were killed, and at least 28 were injured.

On Saturday, Palmer's family released a statement thanking the public and the London Metropolitan Police for the support and well wishes.

"We want to thank everyone who has reached out to us over the past few days for their kindness and generosity," the statement read. "The police have been a constant, unwavering support at this very difficult time. It has made us realize what a caring, strong and supportive family Keith was part of during his career with the police. We can't thank them enough."

The statement added, "We would also like to express our gratitude to the people who were with Keith in his last moments and who were working that day. There was nothing more you could have done."

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