22 dead, scores wounded, in Manchester terror attack on teens

The victims of terror at a concert in Manchester, England – so far, 22 dead and scores wounded – were mostly teens. A group of ISIS supporters celebrated the deadly attack.

An explosion struck an Ariana Grande concert attended by thousands of young music fans in Manchester, northern England, killing at least 22 people and injuring dozens in what police said Tuesday was being treated as a terrorist attack.

Police believe that one man had set off an improvised explosive device and died in the attack.

Northwest Ambulance Service said 59 injured people had been taken to hospitals, and a number of “walking wounded” were treated at the scene.

Police cars, bomb-disposal units and 60 ambulances raced to the scene as the scale of the carnage became clear.

“We are currently treating this as a terrorist incident until we know otherwise,” said Ian Hopkins, chief constable of Greater Manchester Police. There was panic after the explosion, which struck around 10:30 p.m. Monday night as Grande was ending the concert, part of her Dangerous Woman Tour.

Grande, who was not injured, tweeted hours later: “Broken. From the bottom of my heart, I am so, so sorry. I don’t have words.”

Manchester Arena said on its website that the blast struck outside the venue as concertgoers were leaving. Some eyewitnesses said it happened in the foyer of the arena just after the concert ended.

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One witness said Grande had just finished her final song and said “Thank you, Manchester,” before leaving the stage.

Nightlong Search for Loved Ones

The incident led to a nightlong search for loved ones as parents tried to locate their teenage children and groups of friends scattered by the explosion sought to find one another.

Taxi services offered to give stranded concertgoers rides home for free, and residents opened their homes to provide lodging for people who could not get home because public transport had shut down.

Jenny Brewster said she was leaving the concert with her 11-year-old daughter when the blast hit.

“As I turned around, boom, one loud noise,” she told Sky News. “A gentleman said ‘run!’ so we ran.”

Outside, she said, “you could smell the burning.”

Britain’s terrorist threat level stands at “severe,” the second-highest rung on a five-point scale, meaning an attack is highly likely.

Netanyahu: ‘Terrorism is a Global Threat’

On Tuesday morning, commenting on the horrific Manchester attack and in line with US President Trump’s historic address in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on Saturday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a statement on the need for a unified global effort to combat terrorism.

“The Government of Israel strongly condemns last night’s awful terrorist attack in Manchester. I send condolences to the families of the people who were murdered and my wishes for a recovery to those who were injured. Terrorism is a global threat and the enlightened countries must work together to defeat it everywhere,” Netanyahu stated.

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There was no immediate claim of responsibility. Online, supporters of the extremist Islamic State group, which holds territory in Iraq’s Mosul and around its de facto capital in the Syrian city of Raqqa, celebrated the blast.

‘May They Taste What the Weak People Experience’

One wrote: “May they taste what the weak people in Mosul and (Raqqa) experience from their being bombed and burned,” according to the U.S.-based SITE Intelligence Group.

If the incident is confirmed as a terrorist attack it would be the deadliest in Britain since four suicide bombers killed 52 London commuters on three subway trains and a bus in July 2005.

Video from inside the arena showed concertgoers screaming as they made their way out amid a sea of pink balloons.

British Prime Minister Theresa May said the government was working to establish “the full details of what is being treated by the police as an appalling terrorist attack.”

May is due to chair a meeting of the government’s COBRA emergency committee later Tuesday. She and other candidates suspended campaigning for Britain’s June 8 election after the blast.

Police advised the public to avoid the area around the Manchester Arena, and the train station near the arena, Victoria Station, was evacuated and all trains canceled.

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Pop concerts and nightclubs have been a terrorism target before. Almost 90 people were killed by gunmen inspired by Islamic State at the Bataclan concert hall in Paris during a performance by Eagles of Death Metal in November 2015.

In Turkey, 39 people died when a gunman attacked New Year’s revelers at the Reina nightclub in Istanbul.

By: AP and World Israel News