Man Arrested in Connection With Suicide Bombing at Ariana Grande Concert; First Victims Identified (UPDATES)
The deadly bombing at an Ariana Grande concert last night was most likely a suicide attack carried out by one man, Greater Manchester Police Chief Constable Ian Hopkins said Tuesday morning. The blast left at least 22 people dead and 59 more injured. Several children were among those killed, according to Hopkins.
“We have been treating this as a terrorist incident and we believe at this stage that the attack was carried out by one man,” he said, according to CNN.
A 23-year-old man was arrested Tuesday in South Manchester in connection with the attack, though his alleged role remains unclear.
UK Prime Minster Theresa May also spoke Tuesday morning, calling the bombing “a callous terrorist attack…that targeted some of the youngest people in our society with cold calculation.” Police believe they know the identity of the attacker, according to May, but have so far refused to name him or his nationality.
“We struggle to comprehend the warped and twisted mind that sees a room packed with young children not as a scene to cherish but as an opportunity for carnage,” May said. “But we can continue to resolve to thwart such attacks in future. To take on the ideology that often fuels this violence. And if there turn out to be others responsible for the attack to seek them out and bring them to justice.”
President Donald Trump also condemned the attack Tuesday in a press conference from Jerusalem, calling the perpetrators “evil losers.”
The BBC reports that the first victim of the attack has been identified as Georgina Callander, an 18-year-old health and social care student at Runshaw College. A photo posted to Callander’s Instagram account two years ago shows the teen posing with Grande.
Grande posted a brief statement on Twitter early Tuesday morning. “broken,” she wrote. “from the bottom of my heart, i am so so sorry. i don’t have words.”
UPDATE (8:42 am): The BBC reports that Saffie Rose Roussos, 8, was also killed in the attack. “Saffie was simply a beautiful little girl in every aspect of the word,” the headteacher at her primary school said in a statement. “She was loved by everyone and her warmth and kindness will be remembered fondly. “
UPDATE (12:31 pm): Greater Manchester Police’s Chief Constable Ian Hopkins has identified the attacker as 22-year-old Salman Abedi. CBS News reports that Abedi was known to British authorities before to the attack.