Manchester - Approach to Piccadilly Station. And the Manchester Arena Bombing.

Manchester – Approach to Piccadilly Station. And the Manchester Arena Bombing.

The Postcard

A postally unused Photocolour postcard that was printed and published in the mid 1960’s by E. T. W. Dennis & Sons of Scarborough and London.

The card has a divided back.

The Manchester Arena Bombing

On the 22nd. May 2017, an Islamist extremist suicide bomber detonated a shrapnel-laden homemade bomb as people were leaving the Manchester Arena following a concert by American singer Ariana Grande.

Twenty-three people were killed, including the attacker, and 1,017 were injured, many of them children. Several hundred more suffered psychological trauma.

The bomber was Salman Ramadan Abedi, a 22-year-old local man of Libyan ancestry. After initial suspicions of a terrorist network, police later said that they believed Abedi had largely acted alone, but that others had been aware of his plans.

In March 2020, the bomber’s brother, Hashem Abedi, was found guilty of 22 counts of murder and attempting to murder 1,017 others, and was sentenced to life in prison.

The incident was the deadliest terrorist attack and the first suicide bombing in the United Kingdom since the 7th. July 2005 London bombings.

The Bombing

On the 22nd. May 2017 at 22:15 a member of the public reported Abedi, wearing black clothes and a large rucksack to Showsec security. A security guard observed Abedi, but said that he did not intervene in case his concerns about Abedi were wrong, and out of fear of being considered a racist.

The security guard tried to use his radio to alert the security control room, but was unable to get through.

Police officers on duty that night were subsequently criticised for their behaviour in the hours leading up to the atrocity – including a two-hour dinner break and a 10-mile round trip to buy a kebab.

At one point, when Abedi took his final trip through the station to his hiding place in the foyer, there were no BTP officers on duty in the area.

At 22:31 the suicide bomber detonated an improvised explosive device, packed with nuts and bolts to act as shrapnel, in the foyer area of the Manchester Arena.

The attack took place after a concert by American pop star Ariana Grande that was part of her Dangerous Woman Tour. 14,200 people had attended the concert.

Many exiting concert-goers and waiting parents were in the foyer at the time of the explosion. According to evidence presented at the coroner’s inquest, the bomb was powerful enough to kill people up to 20 metres (66 ft) away.

A report by inquiry chair John Saunders blamed “failings by individuals” for “missed opportunities” to detect and stop bomber Salman Abedi.

Saunders outlined a “litany” of failures by venue operators SMG, security firm Showsec and British Transport Police (BTP) – failures that included taking unauthorised two-hour meal breaks and ignoring members of the public who tried to raise the alarm:

— Reconnaissance Oversights

Abedi went to the arena several times to carry out hostile reconnaissance in the run-up to the bombing, visiting on the 18th. and 21st. May, and also the afternoon on the day of the attack.

Although arena operator SMG and security firm Showsec “had experience of identifying and responding to potential hostile reconnaissance effectively”, the system for passing on information about suspicious behaviour was “insufficiently robust”.

If the Showsec staff on duty at the time, Kyle Lawler and Mohammed Agha – then aged 18 and 19 respectively – had been aware of previous reports of suspicious activity, “it would have increased the possibility” of Abedi being spotted.

Inquiry chair Saunders also notes that SMG could have extended the permitted security perimeter from the entrance doors of the arena to the City Room, the foyer where the bomb detonated. “Had permission to push out the perimeter been granted, an attack in the City Room would have been much less likely,” the report says.

— Absence of Officers

Despite five officers being assigned to the arena on the night of the attack, “there was a complete absence of any BTP officer in the City Room” in the half hour before Abedi detonated the bomb. And no officers were policing the public areas of the venue between 8.58pm and 9.36pm.

The report found that BTP officers “took breaks substantially and unjustifiably” longer than their authorised one hour. Instructions to stagger breaks between 7.30pm and 9pm – when younger children could be leaving the venue – were also ignored.

The public inquiry into the attack had previously heard how two officers on duty at the concert, PC Jessica Bullough and PCSO Mark Renshaw, had taken a “two-hour-and-nine-minute dinner break to get a kebab five miles from the arena”. The Telegraph reported:

"Bullough has since admitted that were
she present on her shift as she should
have been, she would have likely stopped
Abedi and asked him what was in his bag”.

— The CCTV Blindspot

Saunders’ report says Abedi chose an “obvious hiding place” in a CCTV blindspot of the arena City Room foyer, having no doubt identified this area during his hostile reconnaissance:

“Had the area been covered by CCTV so that
there was no blind spot, it is likely this
behaviour by Abedi would have been identified
as suspicious by anyone monitoring the CCTV."

Giving evidence to the inquiry, Showsec security guard Agha said that he had noticed Abedi in the City Room, but only because he “liked the look” of Abedi’s trainers.

— Inadequate Patrols

The inquiry report says that:

"A further missed opportunity to spot Abedi
in the half hour before the bomb detonated
arose from the absence of an adequate
security patrol by Showsec at any stage
during this time”.

The supervisor charged with carrying out “pre-egress” checks, Jordan Beak, did so “only very briefly”, patrolling for about ten minutes, during which he just “looked towards the staircases up to the mezzanine area”, where Abedi was sitting:

The report notes:

“He did not consider them a very important
part of the check because it was not an
egress route. Mr Beak did not go up on to the
mezzanine area and so he did not see Abedi.
This was a significant missed opportunity.”

— Concerns ‘Fobbed Off’

Saunders wrote that:

"The most striking missed opportunity, and the
one that is likely to have made a significant
difference, was an attempt by a member of the
public to raise concerns about Abedi after
becoming suspicious about the bomber’s large
and obviously heavy backpack".

Christopher Wild told the inquiry how he had spotted Abedi while waiting for his 14-year-old daughter to leave the concert.

According to the BBC, Wild recalled how he approached Abedi and said:

“It doesn’t look very good you know, what you
see with bombs and such, you with a rucksack
in a place like this, what are you doing?”

Abedi reportedly told Wild that he was “waiting for somebody, mate”, before asking what time it was.

Wild alerted security guard Agha about his suspicions around fifteen minutes before the blast. But according to the inquiry report:

"Agha did not take Christopher Wild’s
concerns as seriously as he should have”.

Wild felt that he had been “fobbed off” by the guard, who claimed to already be aware of Abedi. Agha is said to have made “inadequate” efforts to flag down his supervisor or pass on the message via his colleague Lawler, who had a radio.

Although Agha did share Wild’s concerns with Lawler, the latter “felt conflicted about what to do” and “stated he was fearful of being branded a racist and would be in trouble if he got it wrong”.

Lawler ultimately made an attempt to contact a senior supervisor through the radio, but couldn’t get through, and made no further efforts to communicate what he had been told to anyone else. Saunders wrote:

“The inadequacy of Mr Lawler’s response
was a product of his failure to take Mr Wild’s
concern and his own observations sufficiently
seriously. Mr Wild’s behaviour was very
responsible. He stated that he formed the
view that Abedi might let a bomb off.
That was sadly all too prescient, and makes
all the more distressing the fact that no effective
steps were taken as a result of his efforts.”

Aftermath of the Explosion

Three hours after the bombing, police conducted a controlled explosion on a suspicious item of clothing in Cathedral Gardens. This was later confirmed to have been abandoned clothing and not dangerous.

Residents and taxi companies in Manchester offered free transport or accommodation via Twitter to those left stranded at the concert.  Parents were separated from their children attending the concert in the aftermath of the explosion.

A nearby hotel served as a shelter for people displaced by the bombing, with officials directing separated parents and children there.  Manchester’s Sikh temples along with local homeowners, hotels and venues offered shelter to survivors of the attack.

Manchester Victoria railway station, which is partly underneath the arena, was evacuated and closed, and services were cancelled. The explosion caused structural damage to the station, which remained closed until the damage had been assessed and repaired, resulting in disruption to train and tram services.

Victoria Station reopened eight days later, following the completion of police investigation work and repairs to the fabric of the building.

On the 23rd. May, Prime Minister Theresa May announced that the UK’s terror threat level had been raised to "critical", its highest level. 

In the aftermath of the attack, Operation Temperer was activated for the first time, allowing up to 5,000 soldiers to reinforce armed police in protecting parts of the country.

Tours of the Houses of Parliament and the Changing of the Guard ceremony at Buckingham Palace were cancelled on 24 May, and troops were deployed to guard government buildings in London.

On the 23rd. May, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, via the Nashir Telegram channel, said the attack was carried out by "a soldier of the Khilafah". The message called the attack:

"An endeavor to terrorise the mushrikin,
and in response to their transgressions
against the lands of the Muslims."

Abedi’s sister said that he was motivated by revenge for Muslim children killed by American airstrikes in Syria.

The Manchester Arena remained closed until September 2017, with scheduled concerts either cancelled or moved to other venues. It reopened on the 9th. September 2017, with a benefit concert featuring Noel Gallagher and other acts associated with North West England.

Later that month, Chris Parker, a homeless man who stole from victims of the attack whilst assisting them, was jailed for 4 years and three months.

Casualties of the Attack

The explosion killed the attacker and 22 concert-goers and parents who were in the entrance waiting to pick up their children following the show. 119 people were initially reported as injured. This number was revised by police to 250 on the 22nd. June, with the addition of severe psychological trauma and minor injuries.

During the public inquiry into the bombing, it was updated in December 2020 to 1,017 people sustaining injuries.

The dead included ten people aged under 20; the youngest victim was an eight-year-old girl, and the oldest was a 51-year-old woman. Of the 22 victims, twenty were Britons and two were British-based Polish nationals.

North West Ambulance Service reported that 60 of its ambulances attended the scene, carried 59 people to local hospitals, and treated walking wounded on site.  Of those hospitalised, 12 were children under the age of 16.

The first doctor thought to have been on scene was an off-duty consultant anaesthetist, Michael Daley. In recognition of his bravery for the role he played in the immediate medical response to the incident, Daley’s name was entered into the BMA’s Book of Valour in June 2017.

The Attacker

The bomber, Salman Ramadan Abedi, was a 22-year-old British Muslim of Libyan ancestry. He was born in Manchester to a Salafi family of Libyan-born refugees who had settled in Manchester after fleeing to the UK to escape the government of Muammar Gaddafi.

He had two brothers and a sister. He grew up in Whalley Range and lived in Fallowfield. Neighbours described the Abedis as a very traditional and "super religious" family who attended Didsbury Mosque.

Abedi attended Wellacre Technology College, Burnage Academy for Boys and The Manchester College. A former tutor remarked that:

"Abedi was a very slow, uneducated
and passive person".

He was among a group of students at his high school who accused a teacher of Islamophobia for asking them what they thought of suicide bombers. He also reportedly said to his friends that being a suicide bomber "was OK" and fellow college students raised concerns about his behaviour.

Abedi’s father was a member of the Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, a Salafi jihadist organisation proscribed by the United Nations, and father and son fought for the group in Libya in 2011 as part of the movement to overthrow Muammar Gaddafi.

Abedi’s parents, both born in Tripoli, remained in Libya in 2011, while 17-year-old Abedi returned to live in the United Kingdom. He took a gap year in 2014, where he returned with his brother Hashem to Libya to live with his parents. Abedi was injured in Ajdabiya that year while fighting for an Islamist group.

The brothers were rescued from Tripoli by the Royal Navy survey ship HMS Enterprise in August 2014 as part of a group of 110 British citizens as the Libyan civil war erupted, taken to Malta and flown back to the UK.

According to a retired European intelligence officer, Abedi met with members of the ISIS Battar brigade in Libya, and continued to be in contact with the group upon his return to the UK.

An imam at Didsbury mosque recalled that Abedi looked at him "with hate" after he preached against ISIS and Ansar al-Sharia in 2015.

Abedi’s sister said her brother was motivated by the injustice of Muslim children dying in bombings stemming from the American-led intervention in the Syrian Civil War.

A family friend of the Abedi’s also remarked that Salman had vowed revenge at the funeral of Abdul Wahab Hafidah, who was run over and stabbed to death by a Manchester gang in 2016 and was a friend of Salman and his younger brother Hashem. Hashem later co-ordinated the Manchester bombing with his brother.

According to an acquaintance in the UK, Abedi was "outgoing" and consumed alcohol, while another said that Abedi was a "regular kid who went out and drank" until about 2016. Abedi was also known to have used cannabis.

He enrolled at the University of Salford in September 2014, where he studied business administration, before dropping out to work in a bakery. Manchester police believe Abedi used student loans to finance the plot, including travel overseas to learn bomb-making.

The Guardian reported that despite dropping out from further education, he was still receiving student loan funding in April 2017. Abedi returned to Manchester on the 18th. May after a trip to Libya and bought bomb-making material, apparently constructing the acetone peroxide-based bomb by himself. Many members of the IS Battar brigade trained people in bomb-making in Libya.

He was known to British security services and police but was not regarded as a high risk, having been linked to petty crime but never flagged up for radical views.

A community worker told the BBC he had called a hotline five years before the bombing to warn police about Abedi’s views and members of Britain’s Libyan diaspora said they had "warned authorities for years" about Manchester’s Islamist radicalisation.

Abedi was allegedly reported to authorities for his extremism by five community leaders and family members, and had been banned from a mosque; the Chief Constable of Greater Manchester, however, said Abedi was not known to the Prevent anti-radicalisation programme.

On the 29th. May 2017, MI5 launched an internal inquiry into its handling of the warnings it had received about Abedi and a second, "more in depth" inquiry, into how it missed the danger.

On the 22nd. November 2018, a Parliamentary report said that MI5 had acted "too slowly" in its dealings with Abedi. The committee’s report noted:

"What we can say is that there were a number
of failings in the handling of Salman Abedi’s case.
While it is impossible to say whether these would
have prevented the devastating attack on the
22nd. May, we have concluded that as a result of
the failings, potential opportunities to prevent it
were missed."

Investigation Into the Bombing

The property in Fallowfield where Abedi lived was raided on the 23rd. May. Armed police breached the house with a controlled explosion and searched it. Abedi’s 23-year-old brother was arrested in Chorlton-cum-Hardy in south Manchester in relation to the attack.

Police carried out raids in two other areas of south Manchester and another address in the Whalley Range area. Three other men were arrested, and police initially spoke of a network supporting the bomber; however they later announced that Abedi had sourced all the bomb components himself, and that they now believed he had largely acted alone. On the 6th. July, police said that they believed others had been aware of Abedi’s plans.

According to German police sources, Abedi transited through Düsseldorf Airport on his way home to Manchester from Istanbul four days before the bombing. French interior minister Gérard Collomb said that Abedi may have been to Syria, and had "proven" links with IS.

Abedi’s younger brother and father were arrested by Libyan security forces on the 23rd. and 24th. May respectively. The brother was suspected of planning an attack in Libya, and was said to be in regular touch with Salman, and was aware of the plan to bomb the Manchester Arena, but not the date.

According to a Libyan official, the brothers spoke on the phone about 15 minutes before the attack was carried out. On the 1st. November 2017, the UK requested Libya to extradite the bomber’s younger brother, Hashem Abedi to the UK in order to face trial for complicity in the murder of the 22 people killed in the explosion.

Photographs of the remains of the IED published by The New York Times indicated that it had comprised an explosive charge inside a lightweight metal container which was carried within a black vest or a blue Karrimor backpack.

Most of the fatalities occurred in a ring around the bomber. His torso was propelled by the blast through the doors to the arena, indicating that the explosive charge was held in the backpack and blew him forward on detonation. A small device thought to have possibly been a hand-held detonator was also found.

The bomb contained the explosive TATP, which had been used in previous bombings. According to Manchester police, the explosive device used by Abedi was the design of a skilled bomb-maker and had a back-up means of detonation. Police also said that Salman Abedi bought most of the bomb components himself, and that he was alone during much of the time before carrying out the Manchester bombing.

On the 28th. May, police released images showing Abedi on the night of the bombing, taken from CCTV footage. Further images showed Abedi walking around Manchester with a blue suitcase.

According to US intelligence sources, Abedi was identified by the bank card that he had with him and the identification was confirmed using facial recognition technology.

A public inquiry into the attack was launched in September 2020. The first of three reports to be produced was a 200-page report published on the 17th. June 2021. It found that:

"There were a number of missed opportunities
to alter the course of what happened that night,
and more should have been done by police and
private security guards to prevent the bombing."

News Leaks

Within hours of the attack, Abedi’s name and other information that had been given confidentially to security services in the United States and France was leaked to the news media. This led to condemnation from Home Secretary Amber Rudd.

Following the publication of crime scene photographs of the backpack bomb used in the attack in the 24th. May edition of The New York Times, UK counterterrorism police chiefs said the release of the material was detrimental to the investigation.

On the 25th. May, Greater Manchester Police said that it had stopped sharing information on the attack with the US intelligence services. Theresa May said she would make clear to President Trump that:

"Intelligence that has been
shared must be made secure."

Donald Trump described the leaks to the news media as "deeply troubling", and pledged to carry out a full investigation.

New York Times editor Dean Baquet declined to apologise for publishing the backpack bomb photographs, saying:

"We live in different press worlds.
The material was not classified at
the highest level."

On the 26th. May, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said the United States government accepted responsibility for the leaks.

Links with the Muslim Brotherhood

According to a secret recording unveiled by the BBC, Mostafa Graf, the imam of the Didsbury Mosque where Salman Abedi and his family were regulars, made a call for armed jihad ten days before Abedi bought his concert ticket.

Following these revelations, the Manchester Police opened an investigation into the mosque and its imam, who also fought with a Libyan Islamist militia. Mostafa Graf is a member of the International Union of Muslim Scholars, an organisation founded by the Muslim Brotherhood and Yusuf al-Qaradawi. Al-Qaradawi is known for having claimed:

"Suicide bombings are a duty".

Haras Rafiq, head of the Quilliam think tank, told The Guardian that the Muslim Brotherhood runs the Didsbury Mosque.

The Didsbury Mosque is controlled by The Islamic Centre (Manchester), an English association headed by Dr. Haytham al-Khaffaf, who is also a director of the Human Relief Foundation, a Muslim Brotherhood organisation blacklisted for terrorism by Israel. Between 2015 and 2016, al-Khaffaf’s Human Relief Foundation received over £1.5 million from the Qatar Charity, which is also subject to US counterterrorism surveillance.

Trial and Sentencing of Hashem Abedi

On the 17th. July 2019, Salman Abedi’s brother Hashem was charged with murder, attempted murder and conspiracy to cause an explosion. He had been arrested in Libya and extradited to the UK.

His trial began on the 5th. February 2020. On the 17th. March, Hashem Abedi was found guilty on 22 charges of murder, on the grounds that he had helped his brother to source the materials used in the bombing, and had assisted with the manufacture of the explosives which were used in the attack.

On the 20th. August, Hashem Abedi was sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 55 years. The judge, Mr Justice Jeremy Baker, said that sentencing rules prevented him from imposing a whole life order as Abedi had been 20 years old at the time of the offence. The minimum age for a whole life order is 21 years old. Abedi’s 55-year minimum term is the longest minimum term ever imposed by a British court.

Ismail Abedi

In October 2021 it was reported that Salman Abedi’s older brother Ismail had left the UK despite being summonsed by Sir John Saunders to testify before the public inquiry into the bombing. Saunders had refused Ismail Abedi’s request for immunity from prosecution while testifying.

Ariana Grande

Ariana Grande posted on Twitter:

"Broken. from the bottom of my
heart, i am so so sorry. i don’t
have words."

The tweet briefly became the most-liked tweet in history. Grande suspended her tour and flew back to her mother’s home in Florida.

On the 9th. July 2017, a performance to benefit the Manchester bombing victims was held in New York City’s The Cutting Room, called "Break Free: United for Manchester", with Broadway theatre and television performers interpreting Ariana Grande songs.

On the 4th. June, Ariana Grande hosted a benefit concert in Manchester, entitled "One Love Manchester" at Old Trafford Cricket Ground that was broadcast live on television, radio and social media.

At the concert, Grande performed along with several other high-profile artists. Free tickets were offered to those who had attended the show on the 22nd. May. The benefit concert and associated Red Cross fund raised £10 million for victims of the attack, and £17 million by August. New York’s Vulture section ranked the event as the No. 1 concert of 2017.

The Kerslake Report

On the 27th. March 2018, a report by Bob Kerslake named the "Kerslake Report" was published. The report was an independent review into the preparedness for, and emergency response to, the Manchester Arena attack on the 22nd. May 2017.

In the report, Kerslake "largely praised" the Greater Manchester Police and British Transport Police, and noted that it was "fortuitous" that the North West Ambulance Service was unaware of the declaration of Operation Plato, a protocol under which all responders should have withdrawn from the arena in case of an active killer on the premises.

However, it found that the Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service was "brought to a point of paralysis" as their response was delayed for two hours due to poor communication between the firefighters’ liaison officer and the police force.

The report was critical of Vodafone for the "catastrophic failure" of an emergency helpline hosted on a platform provided by Content Guru, saying that delays in getting information caused "significant stress and upset" to families.

It also expressed criticism of some news media, saying:

"To have experienced such intrusive and
overbearing behaviour at a time of such
enormous vulnerability seemed to us to
be completely and utterly unacceptable".

However, it was also noted that:

"We recognise that this was some, but by
no means all of the media, and that the
media also have a positive and important
role to play."

Memorial to the Bombing

The victims of the bombing are commemorated by The Glade of Light, a garden memorial located in Manchester city centre near Manchester Cathedral. The memorial opened to the public in January 2022.

The memorial was vandalised on the 9th. February 2022, causing £10,000 of damage. A 24-year-old man admitted to the offence in April and will be sentenced at a later date.

The 2018 Manchester Terror Attack

The Manchester Arena is next to Victoria Station, and in fact partly above it. Victoria Station witnessed a subsequent terror attack on the 31st. December 2018 at 20.52.

Mahdi Mohamud, a 25 year old man from Somalia stabbed three people in a knife attack at the station. He appears to have acted alone.

Mohamud shouted "Allah!" and "Long live the Caliphate!" during the attack, and "Allahu Akbar" after being arrested. A witness alleged that during the attack he also shouted a slogan criticising Western governments. BBC producer Sam Clack reported that he heard Mohamud saying:

"As long as you keep bombing other
countries this sort of s— is going to
keep happening,"

Mohamud had lived in England for about 10 years, and resided in Manchester’s Cheetham neighbourhood with his parents and siblings.

Two of the three victims, a couple in their 50’s who had come into town to celebrate the New Year, were hospitalised with serious injuries. The third victim was a British Transport Police officer who received a stab wound to his shoulder.

Despite suffering from paranoid schizophrenia, Mohamud was convicted of a terror offence and the attempted murder of three people, due to his possession of significant amounts of extremist material and the attack’s extensive planning. He pleaded guilty to three counts of attempted murder and a terror offence.

The perpetrator, who was initially detained under the Mental Health Act, was sentenced to life imprisonment in a high-security psychiatric hospital.

The Second Inquiry into the Arena Bombing

On the 3rd. November 2022, inquiry chair Sir John Saunders issued a second report into the atrocity. Within the 884 pages he said that the emergency services failed to communicate properly in response to the incident, stemming from ‘failures to prepare.’

He concluded that "Failing" emergency services thought a terror attack "could never happen" before the Manchester Arena bombing.

Sir John Saunders said the majority of those who died were so badly injured they could not have survived. However, it is believed that two of the 22 fatalities could have recovered if they had received better medical care.

Pointing the finger at leaders of the police, fire and ambulance services, he said:

“On the night of the attack, multi‐agency
communication between the three
emergency services was non‐existent.
That failure played a major part in what
went wrong.”

He added:

“There had been failures to prepare. There
had been inadequacies in training.
Well-established principles had not been
ingrained in practice.
Why was that? Partly it was because, despite
the fact that the threat of a terrorist attack was
at a very high level on the 22nd. May 2017, no
one really thought it could happen to them.”

The report also paid tribute to the “heroic” actions of ordinary members of the public who joined police and security and medical teams trying to save lives in a “war zone”.

Sir John said that two fatalities, John Atkinson, 28, and the youngest victim, eight year old Saffie-Rose Roussos, did have a chance of survival. Sir John said:

“I have concluded that one of those who
died, John Atkinson would probably have
survived had the emergency response
been better.”

He added:

“In the case of Saffie Rose Roussos, I have
concluded that there was a remote possibility
that she could have been saved if the rescue
operation had been conducted differently.”

The inquiry heard that only three paramedics went into the City Room after the attack. Crews from Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service took more than two hours to attend the Arena.

Sir John added:

“GMP (Greater Manchester Police) did not
lead the response in accordance with the
guidance that it had been given or parts of
its own plans.
Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service
(GMFRS) failed to turn up at the scene at a
time when they could provide the greatest
assistance.
North West Ambulance Service (NWAS) failed
to send sufficient paramedics into the City
Room.
NWAS did not use available stretchers to
remove casualties in a safe way, and did not
communicate their intentions sufficiently to
those who were in the City Room.”

Despite highlighting a series of failings, he said that:

"There were some parts of the emergency
response that worked well, and that no doubt
lives were saved”.

Paying tribute to those who helped the victims, he said:

“The heroism shown by very many people
that night is striking. I have seen the terrible
footage from the CCTV and body-worn video
cameras of the scene of devastation in the City
Room.
The description of that area as being like a
“warzone” was used by a number of witnesses.
That is an accurate description. To enter the
City Room or remain there to help victims
required great courage.”

Sir John added:

“At the centre of my Inquiry is the terrible loss
of twenty two lives. Each family and each person
at the Arena has a deeply personal story to tell
about the impact of the attack on them.
My report cannot change what has happened.
My intention is to uncover what went wrong and
find ways of improving practices so that no one
has to suffer such terrible pain and loss again.”

The report also stated that responsibility for the deaths lies with suicide bomber Salman Abedi, 22, and his brother Hashem, 25, who is serving life behind bars for his part in the plot.

The inquiry found that the brothers had “planned to cause as much harm to as many people as they could" when Abedi exploded his home made device.

Posted by pepandtim on 2022-02-03 09:44:25

Tagged: , postcard , old , early , nostalgia , nostalgic , Manchester , Piccadilly , Station , Photocolour , printed , published , Dennis , Sons , Scarborough , London , divided , back , 34MAT79 , 2018 , Mohamud , stabbing , knife , Mahdi , paranoid , schizophrenia , kebab , radio , Showsec , rucksack

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