Brutal murder in Britain: 'You're going to lose', said mum who 'disarmed' attackers

When confronted with random acts of violence, the first reflex of most humans is to seek safety. But when Ingrid Loyau-Kennett, a 48-year-old mother of two and a Cub scout leader, came  face-to-face with a knife-wielding Islamist attacker at Woolwich in southeast London who wanted to "start a war in London tonight", she calmly talked to him - and urged him to surrender.

For her selfless act of bravery, overlooking the risk to her own life, she is being celebrated on social media platforms as a hero.

Loyau-Kennett was one of the first people to arrive at the scene in Woolwich where two men - evidently in a fit of jihadist rage - butchered a British soldier with machetes and butcher's knives.

 Brutal murder in Britain: Youre going to lose, said mum who disarmed attackers

Profile in courage: Ingrid Layou-Kennett persuades one of the knife-wielding Woolwich attackers to surrender. Image grab from Twitter

She told The Telegraph of London that she was in a passing bus and saw the bloodied body of the soldier on the streetside, and since she, as a Cub scout leader, had received training in administering first-aid and had a kit at hand, she hopped off the bus to attend to him. She had assumed it was an accident scene, but soon realised that the man was dead - and that it was not exactly an accident.

"When I went up there, there was this black guy with a revolver and a kitchen knife... He had what looked like butcher's tools and he had a little axe, to cut the bones, and two large knives. And he said, 'Move off the body'," Loyau-Kennett told newspaper.

She said she didn't quite know what was going on, but she felt that it would be better to keep the blood-covered attacker distracted and keep him from attacking more people. She asked him if he had killed the man, and why. To which he said: "Because he has killed Muslim people in Muslim countries... I am fed up with people killing Muslims in Afghanistan..."

And when the attacker said that he wanted to "start a war in London tonight," Loyau-Kennett patiently sought to dissuade him and urged him to surrender his weapons. "I said: 'Right now it is only you versus many people, you are going to lose'," she recalled.

She then went over to the other attacker - who seemed "much shier" - and urged him to hand over "what you have in your hands."

"I did not want to say 'weapons', but I thought it was better having them aimed on one person like me rather than everybody there," she told the newspaper.

The attackers didn't quite hand over their knives, but in a larger sense, Loyau-Kennett had - by standing face-to-face with them and by plainly telling them that they would "lose" - metaphorically disarmed them and calmed them down and, most importantly, ensured they didn't attack anyone else.

On Twitter, Loyau-Kennett's selfless act of bravery has many people in awe.

Tarek Fatah, who is known for his commentaries against Islamic jihadists, had this to say of Loyau-Kennett:

And Layou-Kennett's daughter offered a most unlikely tribute...

Others chipped in with similar sentiments

Read The Telegraph report here and the Daily Mail report here

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Updated Date: May 23, 2013 08:25:09 IST