A parliamentarian stabbed in an operation in a constituency wants to meet his attacker so “he can finally forgive her”.
Stephen Timms, who represented East Ham for 27 years, was stabbed twice in the stomach by Islamic extremist Roshonara Choudhry in Beckton, East London, in May 2010.
The deputy, 66, said he received letters from Ms. Choudhry from prison but had not yet met her.
“I can’t forgive her if I don’t meet her face to face,” he said.
Choudhry, 32, is serving a life sentence, with a minimum prison sentence of 15 years, for attempted murder.
Timms’ comments come after the killing of Conservative MP Sir David Amess, who raised questions about the threats MPs face.
“She (Choudhry) wrote to me recently,” said the Labor MP. “I have received three letters from her. I would like to meet her and ask her why she did what she did.
“Based on the letters he sent me, he seems to have thought about it a lot and we would probably have a useful conversation.”
But Mr. Timms said, “It’s impossible to forgive someone without having some kind of relationship and that’s why I’d like face-to-face contact.”
On Monday it was one of the MPs who spoke in the House of Commons to pay tribute to Sir David.
Timms said: “He was accessible to his constituents. Tragically, he has now given his life.
“We will rightly reflect on what more we can do to prevent this from happening again. I wonder if we could ask the police to review our appointment lists before any surgery, for example?
“But we must not give up on the accessibility of Members of Parliament. If we do, the sponsors of those who attacked David and who attacked me will have been successful. This must not happen.”
Speaking to BBC Breakfast earlier, Timms said he received an overwhelming “surge of support and warmth” after being stabbed and never thought about giving up on his job.
Sir David was killed in a stabbing attack in election surgery in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex last week.
Ali Harbi Ali, 25, was arrested on murder charges. He is detained under the Terrorism Act.
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