UK Raises Threat Level To 'Critical'; Attack 'May Be Imminent'

Jane Richards
May 24, 2017

On Monday night, a bombing killed 22 people as an Ariana Grande concert ended in Manchester.

She said: "It is a possibility we can not ignore that there is a wider group of individuals linked to this attack". USA officials said they had not yet verified claims that ISIS was responsible.

Mr Rowley said the raised critical threat level meant the Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre's "assessment is not only that an attack remains highly likely but a further attack may be imminent".

It's not clear whether the suspect acted alone or as part of a larger network, the constable added.

"As you would expect the police response to this across Greater Manchester has been significant as we support people to go about their daily business".

The suicide bombing came at the conclusion of US pop star Ariana Grande's concert at the 21,000-capacity Manchester Arena, one of Europe's largest indoor venues. Abedi reportedly died in the explosion.

Islamist extremists Isis have claimed responsibility for the attack through social media channels but no confirmed link between Abedi and the terror group has been expressed by authorities.

Eight-year-old Saffie Rose Roussos, 18-year-old Georgina Calder and 26-year-old John Atkinson have so far been named as three of the dead victims.

Witnesses said they saw bolts and other bits of metal, indicating the bomb may have contained shrapnel meant to maximize injury and death.

Outside Manchester City Hall in the city's Albert Square, hundreds gathered less than 24 hours after a suicide bomber detonated an improvised explosive device at Manchester Arena, killing 22-including children-and injuring more than 50.

Chicago police said Monday that there is no known threat to the area following the deadly attack, but asked the public to stay alert.

"A huge bomb-like bang went off that hugely panicked everyone and we were all trying to flee the arena", said 22-year-old concertgoer Majid Khan. "That is why the terrorists will never win and we will prevail", May said.

It did not name the bomber, as it usually does in attacks it has ordered, and appeared also to contradict a posting on another Islamic State account, Amaq, which spoke of "a group of attackers".

Police secure theManchesterArena in Manchester, Britain, May 23, 2017.

Home Secretary Amber Rudd decried "a barbaric attack, deliberately targeting some of the most vulnerable in our society - young people and children out at a pop concert".

Queen Elizabeth held a minute's silence at a garden party at Buckingham Palace in London.

The Associated Press is reporting that the tour has not been completely cancelled, however, it is unclear whether Thursday's show in London's O2 Arena will take place.

Before Manchester Arena erupted into pandemonium, concert-goers were happily showing off their tickets, outfits and the venue itself.

Other reports by VgToday

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