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THE London bombings cost no more than several hundred pounds to carry out.

Investigations by the police show the price of executing the attacks was dramatically lower than the cost of carrying out similar terrorist atrocities, including 9/11.

Officers also believe that teaching assistant Mohammad Sidique Khan was the principal backer of the 7 July attacks and that he gave money to his three accomplices to buy the bomb-making materials. The men also prepared for the suicide attacks by paying off their debts. At least one bomber is understood to have written a will, detectives found.

As soon as Scotland Yard established the identities of the four responsible for the attacks that killed 52, they began investigating the financing of the attacks.

The figure revealed for the cost of the bombings is significantly lower than the cost of


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financing similar terror attacks across the world.

The 9/11 attacks cost about $500,000 (Pounds 290,000) to execute and the Madrid bombings are estimated to have cost $10,000 (Pounds 5,700) - approximately 10 times the cost of the London bombings.

Loretta Napoleoni, an economist and expert on terrorist financing, said the figu re s, r eve a led in an investigation by the BBC World Service, was part of a pattern. "If you look at 9/11, which cost only $500,000 to execute, and then you look at all the subsequent attacks from Bali to Istanbul to Madrid to London - we actually see that the cost of the attacks is decreasing exponentially."

Days after the London attacks, Chancellor Gordon Brown went to Brussels for a meeting of EU finance ministers to urge them to cooperate more closely to stop the financing of terrorism.

But the fact that London was bombed so cheaply - and the money was raised legitimately

highlights the problems

of tackling terrorist financing.

Douglas Greenburg, who studied the financing of US attacks as part of the 9/11 commission, told the BBC's Dirty Money: "If you have someone who is working and depositing their pay cheques into the bank, and periodically withdrawing money and at night buying components for a bomb, constructing a bomb in their basement, what's the bank going to do about that?"

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