Western democracies have been "outspent, outmanoeuvred and out-strategised" by violent Islamist extremists, Tony Blair has claimed.

In a speech in New York, the former prime minister said that warnings over the past week of terrorist plots against Europe should remind people that they remained under threat.

Mr Blair said a "narrative" that Muslims were under attack from the US and its allies, who acted out of support for Israel, had been allowed to take hold, aided by "websites and blogs".

A fresh confrontation was needed because it would be impossible to defeat extremism "without defeating the narrative that nurtures it", he said.

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