MANCHESTER, England — The Latest on the investigation into the Manchester concert bombing. (all times local):
A British official says police in Manchester will stop sharing information about their bombing investigation with the U.S. until they get a guarantee that there will be no more leaks to the news media.
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly, said there is progress being made on the investigation despite the leaks.
British Prime Minister Theresa May is expected to raise the issue of the leaks with President Donald Trump in Brussels later Thursday.
British officials are particularly angry that photos detailing evidence about the bomb used in the Manchester attack were published in The New York Times, though it was not clear where those came from.
Manchester police would not comment on information-sharing, but said at a news conference that the families of attack victims were distressed by leaks.
—By Paisley Dodds
The head of Manchester police says raids and searches across the city have uncovered items believed important to the investigation into the bombing at Manchester Arena.
Chief Constable Ian Hopkins added that the eight suspects detained so far were “significant” arrests, without elaborating. He said Thursday the searches will take several more days to complete.
Police have swooped in on multiple addresses in the city since Tuesday and those arrested include bomber Salman Abedi’s brother.
Commenting on the leaking of evidence from the investigation to the New York Times, Hopkins said it was “absolutely understandable” that this caused “much distress” to families of victims already suffering with their loss.
British police say an incident attended by officers and army bomb disposal teams in Manchester is now over and the area has been deemed safe.
Greater Manchester Police said officers and soldiers went to a street in Hulme, southwest of central Manchester, on Thursday to deal with a possible suspicious package.
The move sparked a brief period of alarm, coming amid a fast-moving investigation into Monday night’s deadly bomb blast at Manchester Arena that killed 22. Police say the bomber belonged to a network and that investigations are taking place across Manchester.
Police said the cordon in the area has been removed.
The family of an off-duty policewoman who died at the Manchester concert attack has paid tribute to her courage.
Elaine McIver, who served with Cheshire Police, was at the Ariana Grande concert with her partner, Paul, who was wounded in the deadly explosion.
In a statement Thursday, her family said she was “the best we could ever have wished for,” adding: “Despite what has happened to her, she would want us all to carry on regardless and not be frightened by fear tactics, instead she regularly urged us all to rise up against it.”
In total, 22 people — including teenagers and children — were killed in Monday night’s blast.
Queen Elizabeth II has arrived at a children’s hospital to visit those injured in the Manchester Arena blast and the medical staff treating them.
Earlier Thursday, at 11 a.m., many across Britain fell silent and bowed their heads for a minute in tribute to the victims caught up in Monday night’s concert bombing. Crowds gathered at well-known sites including London’s Parliament and Trafalgar Squares and Manchester’s Albert Square.
The queen is expected to meet victims at Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital.
Twelve children under the age of 16 were taken to the hospital by ambulance following Monday night’s attack, which saw 22 people in total killed and dozens more injured.
A German magazine reports that the Manchester concert bomber passed through Duesseldorf airport four days before the attack.
Citing unnamed federal security sources, Focus reports that British-born Salman Abedi twice flew from a German airport in recent years and wasn’t on any international watch list.
A German security official told The Associated Press on Thursday the report was accurate. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the information hadn’t been cleared for public release.
Focus reported that German authorities are now trying to determine whether Abedi had contact with Islamic extremists in Germany before flying to Manchester last week. It says he previously flew from Frankfurt to Britain in 2015.
The magazine also reports that British police informed their German counterparts Abedi had received paramilitary training in Syria.
— Frank Jordans, Berlin
British Prime Minister Theresa May says progress is being made in the Manchester bombing investigation but the national threat level remains critical — meaning another attack may be imminent.
Speaking after a meeting of the government’s COBRA crisis committee, May said “the public should remain vigilant.” May said eight suspects are in custody and “progress is being made.”
The threat level for Britain was raised to its highest level after bomber Salman Abedi killed 22 people at a concert Monday night at Manchester Arena. Police say he was part of a network and they are racing to track down his links.
British police say officers and the army are responding to an incident at a college in Trafford, a district near Manchester.
Greater Manchester Police confirmed reports that an army bomb disposal team was at the scene Thursday. The force said it was too early to say whether the alert is linked to its investigation into the Manchester bomb attack.
It said several roads were closed and officers were “currently assessing the situation.”
Police arrested two more people and were on Thursday searching a new site in Manchester suspected of links to the bombing that killed 22 people at a pop concert, as British authorities complained bitterly about investigation leaks by U.S. officials.
Prime Minister Theresa May is expected to raise the issue of the leaks with President Donald Trump in Brussels later. British officials are particularly angry that photos detailing evidence about the bomb used in the attack were published in the New York Times.
British security and law enforcement officials were reviewing whether other sensitive information involving the investigation should be shared, according to one official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak about the ongoing investigation.
The official added that the intelligence sharing agreement between Britain and the United States is built on trust and that leaks jeopardize active investigations.
Greater Manchester Police have released a statement condemning U.S. intelligence leaks on the Manchester bombing on behalf of the National Counter-Terrorism Policing units. The note suggested a severe rupture in trust between Britain and the United States, who have traditionally shared intelligence at the highest levels.
“When the trust is breached it undermines these relationships, and undermines our investigations and the confidence of victims, witnesses and their family,” the group said.
“This damage is even greater when it involves unauthorized disclosure of potential evidence in the middle of a major counter terrorism investigation.”
Police and security services are also upset that the name of bomber Salman Abedi was apparently leaked by U.S. officials and published while police in Britain were withholding the name for what they said were reasons of operational security.
When the name of the bomber was allegedly released by U.S. officials, raids were underway both in Manchester and in Libya where the bomber’s father lives.
British police are rushing to uncover the network thought to have helped Manchester Arena bomber Salman Abedi in the attack on the Ariana Grande concert.
Greater Manchester Police say two men were arrested overnight Thursday in Manchester and in the Withington area south of the city. Officers also raided a property in the city’s Moss Side neighborhood early Thursday and carried out a controlled explosion.
Eight men have now been detained in Britain connection with Monday’s attack. Those include Abedi’s brother Ismail, his father Ramadan Abedi told The Associated Press. A woman was arrested late Wednesday but was later released without charge.
The senior Abedi denied that his son Salman had links to militants, telling the AP in an interview “we don’t believe in killing innocents” before being taken into custody in Libya, along with another son, Hashim.
Abedi died in Monday’s blast the Grande concert. Grande has cancelled concerts scheduled for Thursday and Friday in London, and in several other sites in Europe.
Dodds and Katz reported from London.
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