Soon after 22 people were injured in the attack on a busy underground train in west London, Trump tweeted: “Another attack in London by a loser terrorist. These are sick and demented people who were in the sights of Scotland Yard. Must be proactive!”
His comments appeared to point the finger at British police. Asked whether Trump knew something Britain did not, May said: “I never think it’s helpful for anybody to speculate on what is an ongoing investigation”.
Others chimed in, with one of May’s former chief of staffs, Nick Timothy, saying Trump’s comment was “so unhelpful from leader of our ally and intelligence partner”.
Britain and the United States have long boasted of their “special relationship”, close ties that were strained earlier this year when the U.S. leaked information on an investigation into a bomber who killed 22 at a Manchester pop concert.
A senior U.S. government official cast doubt on whether Trump was privy to information over whether the bomber in the west London attack was known or not.
The official said that at this point, U.S. agencies had no information to back up any suggestion by Trump that Britain had advance warning or specific intelligence on the attack.
Hours after Trump’s tweet, Sky News cited security sources as saying they had identified a suspect in the attack, with the help of surveillance footage.