For the first time in 13 years, white people make up the largest portion of arrested terror suspects in Britain.
Figures released by the U.K.’s Home Office last month show there have been a total of 351 terrorism-related arrests since the start of the year through June, a 22 percent drop from the 449 arrests recorded last year.
“The fall is partly due to a relatively large number of arrests being made following terrorist attacks in London and Manchester last year,” a report said.
When broken down by race, the number of terrorism suspects described by the arresting officer as white jumped four percentage points to 38 percent during this same time frame, while those described as Asian fell seven percentage points, landing at 37 percent. The portion of suspects described as Black dropped by two points to 9 percent, according to the statistics.
This also marks the first time since June 2005 that the bulk of those arrested were white rather than Asian, The Guardian reported. Still, British authorities say Islamist terrorism remains the greatest threat to national security and that the rise of far-right extremism has also become cause for concern.
Since the Westminster attack in March 2017, police said they’ve thwarted 13 Islamist-related and four extreme right-wing terrorism plots. Dean Haydon, the deputy assistant commissioner for the Metropolitan Police, noted that although there’s been a drop in terror-related arrests overall, the threat level is no lower and the number of active investigations, at around 650, has reached an all-time high.
“Demands upon counter-terrorism policing have increased by about a third since the start of 2017,” said Haydon.
Moreover, Home Office statistics show that 100 people have been brought to trial in England and Wales this year through June, a 39 percent increase from 2017. Of those, 90 were convicted, marking the highest number of persons tried and convicted since the office began collecting data in 2009.
Of the 218 people imprisoned for terror-related offenses, 82 percent were categorized as holding Islamist extremist views, 13 percent as holding far-right extremist ideologies and 6 percent other ideologies.
“The number of Islamist, extremist prisoners saw a slight decrease for the first time,” the Home Office said. “The proportion of prisoners holding far-right ideologies has increased steadily over the past three years, with the number up from 10 to 28 in the latest year.”