| 6.1°C Belfast

Slaughter of the innocents in Manchester - UK threat alert raised to critical

 

Manchester Arena suicide bomb slaughter [photos] Close

Saffie Roussos (8) and Georgina Callander (18) who died in the Manchester Arena terror attack

Saffie Roussos (8) and Georgina Callander (18) who died in the Manchester Arena terror attack

People attend a multi-faith vigil in St Ann's Square, Manchester, to remember the victims of the Manchester terror attack.

People attend a multi-faith vigil in St Ann's Square, Manchester, to remember the victims of the Manchester terror attack.

PA

Muriel Billington, 85 and her daughters (names not given) during a vigil at St Ann's Square in Manchester, after a suicide bomber killed 22 people leaving a pop concert at the Manchester Arena on Monday night.

Muriel Billington, 85 and her daughters (names not given) during a vigil at St Ann's Square in Manchester, after a suicide bomber killed 22 people leaving a pop concert at the Manchester Arena on Monday night.

PA

Belfast City Hall illuminated in the colours of Union flag after the Manchester concert bomb attack. Pic: David Young/PA Wire

Belfast City Hall illuminated in the colours of Union flag after the Manchester concert bomb attack. Pic: David Young/PA Wire

PA

A woman looks at flowers in St. Ann's Square, close to the Manchester Arena where a suicide bomber killed 22 people leaving a pop concert at the venue on Monday night.

A woman looks at flowers in St. Ann's Square, close to the Manchester Arena where a suicide bomber killed 22 people leaving a pop concert at the venue on Monday night.

PA

A silent vigil took place in Belfast city centre in memory of the victims of the bomb attack in Manchester. Picture By: Arthur Allison.

A silent vigil took place in Belfast city centre in memory of the victims of the bomb attack in Manchester. Picture By: Arthur Allison.

Pacemaker Press Belfast 23-05-2017:  A silent vigil took place in Belfast city centre tonight in memory of the victims of last night's bomb attack in Manchester.
Picture By: Arthur Allison.

Pacemaker Press Belfast 23-05-2017: A silent vigil took place in Belfast city centre tonight in memory of the victims of last night's bomb attack in Manchester. Picture By: Arthur Allison.

Pacemaker Press Belfast 23-05-2017:  A silent vigil took place in Belfast city centre tonight in memory of the victims of last night's bomb attack in Manchester.
Picture By: Arthur Allison.

Pacemaker Press Belfast 23-05-2017: A silent vigil took place in Belfast city centre tonight in memory of the victims of last night's bomb attack in Manchester. Picture By: Arthur Allison.

Some of the people who gathered at the War memorial in Derry to express their solidarity with people of Manchester. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 23.05.17

Some of the people who gathered at the War memorial in Derry to express their solidarity with people of Manchester. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 23.05.17

Some of the people who gathered at the War memorial in Derry to express their solidarity with people of Manchester. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 23.05.17

Some of the people who gathered at the War memorial in Derry to express their solidarity with people of Manchester. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 23.05.17

Some of the people who gathered at the War memorial in Derry to express their solidarity with people of Manchester. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 23.05.17

Some of the people who gathered at the War memorial in Derry to express their solidarity with people of Manchester. Picture Martin McKeown. Inpresspics.com. 23.05.17

People gather for a vigil outside Belfast City Hall, after a 23-year-old man was arrested in connection with the Manchester concert bomb attack. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. The attack killed 22 people, including children, and injured dozens more in the worst terrorist incident to hit Britain since the July 7 atrocities. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Michael McHugh/PA Wire

People gather for a vigil outside Belfast City Hall, after a 23-year-old man was arrested in connection with the Manchester concert bomb attack. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. The attack killed 22 people, including children, and injured dozens more in the worst terrorist incident to hit Britain since the July 7 atrocities. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Michael McHugh/PA Wire

PA

People gather for a vigil outside Belfast City Hall, after a 23-year-old man was arrested in connection with the Manchester concert bomb attack. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. The attack killed 22 people, including children, and injured dozens more in the worst terrorist incident to hit Britain since the July 7 atrocities. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Michael McHugh/PA Wire

People gather for a vigil outside Belfast City Hall, after a 23-year-old man was arrested in connection with the Manchester concert bomb attack. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. The attack killed 22 people, including children, and injured dozens more in the worst terrorist incident to hit Britain since the July 7 atrocities. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Michael McHugh/PA Wire

PA

People gather for a vigil in Albert Square outside Manchester Town Hall in Manchester after attack at concert. Photo credit should read: Joe Giddens/PA Wire

People gather for a vigil in Albert Square outside Manchester Town Hall in Manchester after attack at concert. Photo credit should read: Joe Giddens/PA Wire

PA

Members of the public gather to attend a candlelit vigil, to honour the victims of Monday evening's terror attack, at Albert Square on May 23, 2017 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

Members of the public gather to attend a candlelit vigil, to honour the victims of Monday evening's terror attack, at Albert Square on May 23, 2017 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

Getty Images

People from Manchester Sikh Community carry "I love MCR" banners as they arrive to attend a vigil in Albert Square in Manchester, northwest England on May 23, 2017, in solidarity with those killed an injured in the May 22 terror attack at the Ariana Grande concert at the Manchester Arena.
Twenty two people have been killed and dozens injured in Britain's deadliest terror attack in over a decade after a suspected suicide bomber targeted fans leaving a concert of US singer Ariana Grande in Manchester. British police on Tuesday named the suspected attacker behind the Manchester concert bombing as Salman Abedi, but declined to give any further details. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

People from Manchester Sikh Community carry "I love MCR" banners as they arrive to attend a vigil in Albert Square in Manchester, northwest England on May 23, 2017, in solidarity with those killed an injured in the May 22 terror attack at the Ariana Grande concert at the Manchester Arena. Twenty two people have been killed and dozens injured in Britain's deadliest terror attack in over a decade after a suspected suicide bomber targeted fans leaving a concert of US singer Ariana Grande in Manchester. British police on Tuesday named the suspected attacker behind the Manchester concert bombing as Salman Abedi, but declined to give any further details. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

A couple embrace under a billboard in Manchester city centre, Tuesday May 23, 2017, the day after the suicide attack at an Ariana Grande concert that left 22 people dead as it ended on Monday night. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

A couple embrace under a billboard in Manchester city centre, Tuesday May 23, 2017, the day after the suicide attack at an Ariana Grande concert that left 22 people dead as it ended on Monday night. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

AP

BERLIN, GERMANY - MAY 23: Flowers lay in shape of a heart in front of British Embassy on May 23, 2017 in Berlin, Germany. An explosion occurred at Manchester Arena as concert goers were leaving the venue after Ariana Grande had performed. Greater Manchester Police are treating the explosion as a terrorist attack and have confirmed 22 fatalities and 59 injured.  (Photo by Steffi Loos/Getty Images)

BERLIN, GERMANY - MAY 23: Flowers lay in shape of a heart in front of British Embassy on May 23, 2017 in Berlin, Germany. An explosion occurred at Manchester Arena as concert goers were leaving the venue after Ariana Grande had performed. Greater Manchester Police are treating the explosion as a terrorist attack and have confirmed 22 fatalities and 59 injured. (Photo by Steffi Loos/Getty Images)

Getty Images

Flowers are left in St Ann's Square, Manchester, the day after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving a pop concert in Manchester. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Martin Rickett/PA Wire

Flowers are left in St Ann's Square, Manchester, the day after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving a pop concert in Manchester. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Martin Rickett/PA Wire

PA

Retail staff hug each other after being evacuated from the Arndale Centre shopping mall in Manchester, northwest England on May 23

Retail staff hug each other after being evacuated from the Arndale Centre shopping mall in Manchester, northwest England on May 23

AFP/Getty Images

Saffie Rose Roussos, (8) was killed in the attack. Collect/PA Wire

Saffie Rose Roussos, (8) was killed in the attack. Collect/PA Wire

PA

First victim to be named - Georgina Callander. She is pictured with Ariana Grande in 2015. Pic: Instagram Georgina.Bethany

First victim to be named - Georgina Callander. She is pictured with Ariana Grande in 2015. Pic: Instagram Georgina.Bethany

Tributes left outside St Ann's Church in Manchester, the morning after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving a pop concert, at Manchester Arena.

Tributes left outside St Ann's Church in Manchester, the morning after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving a pop concert, at Manchester Arena.

PA

Tributes left outside St Ann's Church in Manchester, the morning after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving a pop concert, at Manchester Arena.

Tributes left outside St Ann's Church in Manchester, the morning after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving a pop concert, at Manchester Arena.

PA

Police evacuated the Arndale Centre on May 23, 2017 in Manchester, England.

Police evacuated the Arndale Centre on May 23, 2017 in Manchester, England.

Getty Images

A  girl wearing a t-shirt of US singer Ariana Grande carrying balloons from the Ariana Grande concert

A girl wearing a t-shirt of US singer Ariana Grande carrying balloons from the Ariana Grande concert

AFP/Getty Images

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MAY 23:  Armed police patrol the Arndale Shopping Centre after the terrorist attack,  May 23, 2017 in Manchester, England. An explosion occurred at Manchester Arena as concert goers were leaving the venue after Ariana Grande had performed. Greater Manchester Police are treating the explosion as a terrorist attack and have confirmed 22 fatalities and 59 injured.  (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MAY 23: Armed police patrol the Arndale Shopping Centre after the terrorist attack, May 23, 2017 in Manchester, England. An explosion occurred at Manchester Arena as concert goers were leaving the venue after Ariana Grande had performed. Greater Manchester Police are treating the explosion as a terrorist attack and have confirmed 22 fatalities and 59 injured. (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)

Getty Images

People look out of the windows of a building opposite the Arndale Centre as the shopping mall is evacuated in Manchester, northwest England on May 23, 2017. 
Twenty two people have been killed and dozens injured in Britain's deadliest terror attack in over a decade after a suspected suicide bomber targeted fans leaving a concert of US singer Ariana Grande in Manchester. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

People look out of the windows of a building opposite the Arndale Centre as the shopping mall is evacuated in Manchester, northwest England on May 23, 2017. Twenty two people have been killed and dozens injured in Britain's deadliest terror attack in over a decade after a suspected suicide bomber targeted fans leaving a concert of US singer Ariana Grande in Manchester. / AFP PHOTO / Ben STANSALLBEN STANSALL/AFP/Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

Manchester United's Wayne Rooney stands alongside team-mates for a minute silence in memory of the victims of the Manchester terror attack during the final training session at the AON Training Complex in Carrington, ahead of the Europa League Final against Ajax.

Manchester United's Wayne Rooney stands alongside team-mates for a minute silence in memory of the victims of the Manchester terror attack during the final training session at the AON Training Complex in Carrington, ahead of the Europa League Final against Ajax.

PA

Prime Minister Theresa May addresses the media in Downing Street, London, after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving a pop concert in Manchester.

Prime Minister Theresa May addresses the media in Downing Street, London, after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving a pop concert in Manchester.

PA

A woman wearing a T-shirt of US singer Ariana Grande near the Manchester Arena in Manchester

A woman wearing a T-shirt of US singer Ariana Grande near the Manchester Arena in Manchester

AFP/Getty Images

Ariana Grande concert attendees leave the Park Inn Hotel where they were given refuge after last nights explosion at Manchester Arena on May 23, 2017 in Manchester, England.

Ariana Grande concert attendees leave the Park Inn Hotel where they were given refuge after last nights explosion at Manchester Arena on May 23, 2017 in Manchester, England.

Getty Images

Armed police close to the Manchester Arena, the morning after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving a pop concert in Manchester. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

Armed police close to the Manchester Arena, the morning after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving a pop concert in Manchester. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

PA

Screen grabbed image taken from the Twitter feed of Ariana Grande after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving her pop concert in Manchester. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. Some 59 people were also injured in the blast when the attacker detonated an improvised explosive device at the Manchester Arena. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Ariana Grande/Twitter/PA Wire

NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.

Screen grabbed image taken from the Twitter feed of Ariana Grande after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving her pop concert in Manchester. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. Some 59 people were also injured in the blast when the attacker detonated an improvised explosive device at the Manchester Arena. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Ariana Grande/Twitter/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.

PA

Mother Amy Trippitt (right) and her daughter Grace, who attended the concert at Manchester Arena last night, leave the Park Inn hotel in the city the morning after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving the pop concert. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

Mother Amy Trippitt (right) and her daughter Grace, who attended the concert at Manchester Arena last night, leave the Park Inn hotel in the city the morning after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving the pop concert. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

PA

Mother Amy Trippitt and her daughter Grace, who attended the concert at Manchester Arena last night, leave the Park Inn hotel in the city the morning after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving the pop concert. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

Mother Amy Trippitt and her daughter Grace, who attended the concert at Manchester Arena last night, leave the Park Inn hotel in the city the morning after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving the pop concert. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

PA

Police close to the Manchester Arena the morning after a terrorist attack at the end of a concert by US star Ariana Grande left 22 dead. PA

Police close to the Manchester Arena the morning after a terrorist attack at the end of a concert by US star Ariana Grande left 22 dead. PA

PA

Greater Manchester Police chief constable Ian Hopkins speaks to the media in Manchester where he said that the death toll from the Manchester bomb attack has risen to 22 with 59 injured. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Peter Byrne/PA Wire

Greater Manchester Police chief constable Ian Hopkins speaks to the media in Manchester where he said that the death toll from the Manchester bomb attack has risen to 22 with 59 injured. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Peter Byrne/PA Wire

PA

Police forensic investigators walk along a bridge linking Victoria Station with the Manchester Arena where a suspected terrorist attack at the end of a concert by US star Ariana Grande left 19 dead. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

Police forensic investigators walk along a bridge linking Victoria Station with the Manchester Arena where a suspected terrorist attack at the end of a concert by US star Ariana Grande left 19 dead. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

PA

Fan leaves the Park Inn hotel in central Manchester, England, Tuesday, May 23, 2017. Over a dozen people were killed in an explosion following a Ariana Grande concert at the Manchester Arena late Monday evening. (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)

Fan leaves the Park Inn hotel in central Manchester, England, Tuesday, May 23, 2017. Over a dozen people were killed in an explosion following a Ariana Grande concert at the Manchester Arena late Monday evening. (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)

AP

BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE

Picture taken with permission from the twitter feed of @Zach_bruce of people running through Manchester Victoria  station after an explosion at Manchester Arena. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: @Zach_bruce/PA Wire

NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.

BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE Picture taken with permission from the twitter feed of @Zach_bruce of people running through Manchester Victoria station after an explosion at Manchester Arena. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: @Zach_bruce/PA Wire NOTE TO EDITORS: This handout photo may only be used in for editorial reporting purposes for the contemporaneous illustration of events, things or the people in the image or facts mentioned in the caption. Reuse of the picture may require further permission from the copyright holder.

PA

Emergency services at Manchester Arena after reports of an explosion at the venue during an Ariana Grande gig. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Peter Byrne/PA Wire

Emergency services at Manchester Arena after reports of an explosion at the venue during an Ariana Grande gig. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Peter Byrne/PA Wire

PA

Emergency services at Manchester Arena after reports of an explosion at the venue during an Ariana Grande gig. [Photo: Peter Byrne/PA Wire]

Emergency services at Manchester Arena after reports of an explosion at the venue during an Ariana Grande gig. [Photo: Peter Byrne/PA Wire]

PA

FILE - In this Aug. 28, 2016 file photo, Ariana Grande arrives at the MTV Video Music Awards in New York. Police say there are "a number of fatalities" after reports of an explosion at an Ariana Grande concert at Manchester Arena in northern England on Monday, May 22, 2017.. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File)

FILE - In this Aug. 28, 2016 file photo, Ariana Grande arrives at the MTV Video Music Awards in New York. Police say there are "a number of fatalities" after reports of an explosion at an Ariana Grande concert at Manchester Arena in northern England on Monday, May 22, 2017.. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP, File)

Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP

A fan is comforted as she leaves the Park Inn hotel in central Manchester, England Tuesday May 23 2017. Over a dozen people were killed in an explosion following a Ariana Grande concert at the Manchester Arena late Monday evening. (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)

A fan is comforted as she leaves the Park Inn hotel in central Manchester, England Tuesday May 23 2017. Over a dozen people were killed in an explosion following a Ariana Grande concert at the Manchester Arena late Monday evening. (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)

AP

A fan leaves the Park Inn hotel in central Manchester, Britain, Tuesday, May 23 2017.  An apparent suicide bomber set off an improvised explosive device that killed over a dozen people at the end of an Ariana Grande concert on Monday, Manchester police said Tuesday.  (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)

A fan leaves the Park Inn hotel in central Manchester, Britain, Tuesday, May 23 2017. An apparent suicide bomber set off an improvised explosive device that killed over a dozen people at the end of an Ariana Grande concert on Monday, Manchester police said Tuesday. (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)

AP

Fans leave the Park Inn hotel in central Manchester, England Tuesday May 23 2017.  An apparent suicide bomber set off an improvised explosive device that killed over a dozen people at the end of an Ariana Grande concert on Monday, Manchester police said Tuesday.  (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)

Fans leave the Park Inn hotel in central Manchester, England Tuesday May 23 2017. An apparent suicide bomber set off an improvised explosive device that killed over a dozen people at the end of an Ariana Grande concert on Monday, Manchester police said Tuesday. (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)

AP

Armed police (left) at Manchester Arena after reports of an explosion at the venue during an Ariana Grande gig. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Monday May 22, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Peter Byrne/PA Wire

Armed police (left) at Manchester Arena after reports of an explosion at the venue during an Ariana Grande gig. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Monday May 22, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Peter Byrne/PA Wire

PA

Flowers left close to the Manchester Arena, the morning after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving a pop concert in Manchester. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

Flowers left close to the Manchester Arena, the morning after a suicide bomber killed 22 people, including children, as an explosion tore through fans leaving a pop concert in Manchester. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday May 23, 2017. See PA story POLICE Explosion. Photo credit should read: Danny Lawson/PA Wire

PA

/

Saffie Roussos (8) and Georgina Callander (18) who died in the Manchester Arena terror attack

An eight-year-old girl and a college student were the first people to be named as victims of the Manchester terror attack yesterday as the UK came to terms with the atrocity.

Twenty-two people were killed and 59 injured after a suicide bomber detonated a homemade device packed with nuts and bolts in the foyer of the Manchester Arena as thousands of young people were leaving a concert by US pop star Ariana Grande on Monday night.

The UK is now on critical terror alert with soldiers set to bolster police forces amid fears Manchester attacker Salmon Abedi did not act alone.

Saffie Roussos (8), who was killed in the attack, was described by the headteacher at her school in Preston as a "beautiful little girl".

Another victim was named by her college as Georgina Callander (18), who was studying health and social care at Runshaw College in Leyland, Lancashire. And tributes have been paid to 26-year-old John Atkinson from Bury, who was named by friends on Facebook as an apparent victim.

Prime Minister Theresa May last night raised the threat level to critical, the highest possible rating.

She said a "wider group of individuals" could have been involved in the Manchester Arena blast rather than just suicide bomber Abedi.

Mrs May said Operation Temperer - allowing military personnel to take to the streets - is now in force.

Mrs May said: "In my statement earlier today, I said that the police and security services needed to investigate whether Abedi was acting alone. Those investigations continue.

"But the work undertaken throughout the day has revealed it is a possibility we cannot ignore that there is a wider group of individuals linked to this attack.

Close

Carnage: The aftermath of the bombing

Carnage: The aftermath of the bombing

Carnage: The aftermath of the bombing

"This morning I said that the Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre, the independent organisation responsible for setting the threat level on the basis of the intelligence available, was keeping the threat level under constant review.

"It has now concluded, on the basis of today's investigations, that the threat level should be increased for the time being from severe to critical." Mrs May said this means that their assessment "is not only that an attack remains highly likely but that a further attack may be imminent".

"The change in the threat level means that there will be additional resources and support made available to the police as they work to keep us all safe," she said.

"As a result of the JTAC decision the police have asked for authorisation from the Secretary of State for Defence to deploy a number of armed military personnel in support of their armed officers.

"This request is part of a well-established plan, known as Operation Temperer, in which both the armed forces and the police officers involved are well trained and well prepared to work in this kind of environment.

"The Secretary of State for Defence has approved this request and Operation Temperer is now in force."

Mrs May said it meant that armed police officers responsible for guarding key sites will be replaced by members of the armed forces, thus freeing up the police to significantly increase the number of armed officers on patrol.

"You might also see military personnel deployed at certain events such as concerts and sports matches, helping the police to keep the public safe," she said.

"In all circumstances members of the armed forces who are deployed in this way will be under the command of police officers."

The PM said that "while we mourn the victims of last night's appalling attack, we stand defiant".

"The spirit of Manchester and the spirit of Britain is far mightier than the sick plots of depraved terrorists, that is why the terrorists will never win and we will prevail," she added.

The youngest victim named yesterday, eight year-old Saffie, had been at the concert with her mother Lisa Roussos and sister Ashlee Bromwich, who is in her 20s, from Leyland, Lancashire. They are both now in separate hospitals being treated for injuries, friends said.

Paying tribute to Saffie, Chris Upton, headteacher of Tarleton Community Primary School, said: "News of Saffie's death in this appalling attack has come as a tremendous shock to all of us and I would like to send our deepest condolences to all of her family and friends.

"The thought that anyone could go out to a concert and not come home is heartbreaking.

"Saffie was simply a beautiful little girl in every aspect of the word. She was loved by everyone and her warmth and kindness will be remembered fondly."

Runshaw College in Leyland, Lancashire, spoke of its "enormous sadness" after hearing of Ms Callander's death.

The teenager was on the second year of her health and social care course.

She was a former student at Bishop Rawstorne Church of England Academy, which said in a statement: "Georgina was a lovely young student who was very popular with her peers and the staff and always made the most of the opportunities she had at the school.

"Our thoughts and prayers go out to Georgina's family at this terrible time, and we think especially of her brothers Harry and Daniel who were also former students of the school."

Mr Atkinson's Facebook account has been "memorialised", a process only made possible by verified family members contacting Facebook directly.

"John was one in a million and loved by so many," wrote Hayley Turk, who organised the fund through website GoFundMe.

"A true gentleman."

Meanwhile, fears were growing for Chloe Rutherford (17) and Liam Curry (19), a couple from South Shields, 15-year-old Olivia Campbell from Manchester, Eilidh MacLeod from Barra in Scotland, Kelly Brewster from Sheffield, and Martyn Hett and Wendy Fawell.

All were believed to have been at the concert and have not been traced since the attack.

Islamic State claimed responsibility for the barbaric attack, which involved a home-made device packed with nuts and bolts which exploded in the venue's foyer as thousands of young people were leaving.

However, the Islamist terror group often claims responsibility for attacks it was not involved in.

Abedi, believed to have been born in Manchester and of Libyan descent, studied business at Salford University but dropped out before completing his degree.

The 22 year-old is thought to have attended the Manchester Islamic Centre, also known as Didsbury Mosque, along with his parents and siblings.

Daily Headlines & Evening Telegraph Newsletter

Receive today's headlines directly to your inbox every morning and evening, with our free daily newsletter.

This field is required


Top Videos



Privacy