British police today made two more arrests in connection with the suicide bombing at a pop concert in Manchester that killed 22 people, bringing the number of suspects in custody to 11. The men, aged 20 and 22, have been held on suspicion of terror offences after officers used an explosive device to gain entry to a home in Cheetham Hill this morning, Greater Manchester Police (GMP) said.
A total of 13 people have been arrested in the terror investigation, two of whom have been released without charge, the Greater Manchester Police said. Eleven people remain in custody in connection with Monday night’s suicide bombing at Manchester Arena, where American singer Ariana Grande had just finished performing.
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The ages of the detained men range from 18 to 38. Police made two arrests yesterday, one in Moss Side and one in Rusholme. The cousins of the bomber are believed to be among those attested. A 34-year-old woman and 16-year-old boy who were also arrested have been released without charge.
Investigators believe 22-year-old Manchester-born suicide bomber Salman Abedi, from a family of Libyan origin, acted as part of a terrorist network and their focus had been on intercepting his wider network. Abedi was known to UK security services, but his risk to the public remained “subject to review”, according to reports.
In the Libyan capital Tripoli, Abedi’s younger brother 20-year-old Hashem and their father, Ramadan, are being held by special forces linked to the country’s interior ministry. Police yesterday said they have “got hold of a large part” of the network linked to the attack.
Mark Rowley, Assistant Commissioner for Specialist Operations in the Metropolitan Police Service, said detectives had made “immense progress” in the investigation, but warned there were still “important lines of inquiry” to pursue. “Further arrests are likely, although police believe they have got hold of a large part of the network,” Rowley said.
Armed police will now guard hundreds of events across the UK this bank holiday weekend following a reassessment of security after the Manchester bombing. Senior officers are encouraging people to go out but to remain vigilant on the first holiday weekend with the national threat level at its highest.
Security is being increased at football cup finals at Wembley and Hampden Park and the Great Manchester Run.