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  1. ITV Report

Manchester Arena suicide attack: What we know so far

Dozens of people were injured in the deadly suicide attack at Manchester Arena. Credit: London News Pictures

At least 22 people, including children, have died and dozens are injured after a suicide bomb attack at Manchester Arena.

The suspect, 22-year-old Salman Abedi, is believed to have had links to so-called Islamic State.

Here's everything we know so far:

  • When did the attack happen?

A suicide bomber, armed with an improvised explosive device, struck a crowd at the Manchester Arena at the end of a gig by US pop star Ariana Grande.

Manchester Arena said the explosion happened outside the venue, as people began leaving the building.

  • Video courtesy of Ellie Cheetham

Mobile phone footage showed the moment an explosion was heard inside the Arena with concert-goers heard screaming "what's going on?" as they began to flee the scene.

Greater Manchester Police said they were notified of the incident at 10.33pm and closed approach roads.

  • What are the latest casualty figures?

Greater Manchester Police said 22 people have died and 64 people have been injured.

Those injured, 12 of whom are under the age of 16, are being treated at eight hospitals across Greater Manchester - with a number in critical conditions.

Dozens of victims have been taken to eight hospitals across Greater Manchester. Credit: PA

It is the worst attack in the UK since 56 people were killed in the 7/7 London bombings in 2005.

  • Who are the victims?
Georgina Callander posted a picture of herself with Ariana Grande, taken two years ago, on Instagram. Credit: georgina.bethany/Instagram

Lancashire student Georgina Callander, 18, primary school pupil Saffie Rose Roussos, eight, and 26-year-old John Atkinson were the first people to be confirmed as victims.

Ms Callander's college reported "with enormous sadness" the death of the teenager, who had tweeted on Monday she was "so excited" to see Ariana Grande.

Saffie Rose Roussos was described as a 'beautiful little girl'. Credit: Family handout

Saffie's headteacher spoke of her "heartbreaking" death, adding: "Saffie was simply a beautiful little girl in every aspect of the word. She was loved by everyone and her warmth and kindness."

Mr Atkinson was described as an "amazing young man" and a "true gentleman" in tributes.

Olivia Campbell, 15, is among the missing after the attack. Credit: ITV's Good Morning Britain

Olivia Campbell, 15, whose mum Charlotte made an emotional plea for her daughter's return, also died in the attack.

She wrote on Facebook: "RIP my darling precious gorgeous girl Olivia Campbell taken far far to soon go sing with the angels and keep smiling mummy loves you so much."

  • Who carried out the attack?
Salman Abedi was born in Manchester of Libyan descent.

The suspected bomber has been identified by officials as 22-year-old Salman Abedi.

He is of Libyan descent but born in Manchester - his refugee parents having fled the regime of dictator Muammar Gaddafi prior to his birth.

Abedi visited his country of origin many times, returning as recently as this week from his latest trip.

He is thought to have been radicalised in recent months.

So-called Islamic State have claimed to be behind the terror attack.

  • What was the police response?
Neighbouring Victoria station was evacuated as trains were cancelled in the aftermath of the attack Credit: Google Earth

More than 400 officers were deployed throughout Monday night while Manchester Victoria station was evacuated and trains cancelled.

Police confirmed a controlled explosion took place shortly after 1.30am at the Cathedral Gardens area near Manchester Arena, but said the suspicious item turned out to be abandoned clothing.

Forensic officers seen entering a property in Fallowfield. Credit: PA

Armed police on Tuesday executed search warrants in two areas in the south of Manchester and carried out a controlled explosion.

Forensic officers were also seen entering a property Elsmore Road, Fallowfield.

  • Have any arrests been made?
Greater Manchester Police have arrested four people so far. Credit: PA

Greater Manchester Police have arrested four people since Monday evening.

A 23-year-old man was detained on Tuesday in connection with the bombing, while a further three men were arrested on Wednesday.

  • What about the terror threat level?
The UK terror threat level is now at critical. Credit: PA

The UK's terror threat level was raised to critical on Tuesday - the highest it can possibly be - meaning an attack could be imminent.

Prime Minister Theresa May said the country could not ignore the possibility "a wider group of individuals linked to this attack" existed.

British Army personnel are set to be deployed in London. Credit: PA

Scotland Yard has also announced that a number of military personnel will be deployed across London in the wake of the attack.

Armed guards from the British army are set to patrol key locations in the capital, including Buckingham Palace, Downing Street and the Palace of Westminster, as part of Operation Temperer.

  • Have any events been cancelled?
Westminster has been closed to the public temporarily. Credit: PA

In the wake of the increased terror threat, the Palace of Westminster, or the Houses of Parliament, have been closed to the public.

All public tours of parliament have been cancelled with immediate effect and any pre-planned events and banquets will no longer go ahead.

The Changing the Guard ceremony at Buckingham Palace has also been cancelled as police officers are redeployed in the wake of the attack.

  • What help is available to those seeking loved ones?
Floral tributes to the victims. Credit: PA

Concerned relatives and friends have been urged to call 0161 856 9400 - an emergency police hotline set up after the explosion at Manchester Arena on Monday evening.

Greater Manchester Police are also offering help or assistance at the city's Etihad Stadium.

Friends and family have been mounting urgent appeals on social media for news of people missing using the hashtag #MissingInManchester.

  • How can you pass on information to the police?

Anyone with information about the blast should call the national anti-terrorist hotline on 0800 789 321.

Anyone with footage from Manchester Arena that could assist the police investigation has been urged to upload it to the site for Police Appeal For Photos/Videos.

  • What has been the response to the attack?

The Queen said the whole nation was shocked by the "act of barbarity".

In a statement offering her deepest sympathy to those affected, she also expressed her admiration for the way the people of Manchester have shown "humanity and compassion" in response to the "act of barbarity".

The Queen condemned the attack as she paid tribute to the people of Manchester.

Mrs May condemned one of the "worst terrorist incidents" the UK has ever seen after chairing an emergency Cobra meeting at Downing Street.

Theresa May said the 'cowardice' of the attacker had been met by the 'bravery' of the city and its emergency services.

"We struggle to comprehend the warped and twisted mind that sees a room packed with young people not as a scene to cherish but as a scene for carnage," she said.

"The people of Manchester and the UK have fallen victim to a callous terrorist attack - an attack that targeted some of the youngest people in our society with callous calculation."

All major political leaders condemned the attack and praised the response of emergency workers.

Mayor of Manchester Andy Burnham said the city gave the 'best possible' response to the attack.

Mayor of Manchester Andy Burnham paid tribute to "the people of Manchester" as he condemned the "evil act" at the Arena.

"Even in the minutes after the attack, they opened their doors to strangers and drove them away from danger," he said of the public reaction.

"They gave the best possible immediate response to those who seek to divide us and it will be that spirit of Manchester that will prevail and hold us together."

  • How did the city residents help those caught up in the attack?
Taxi drivers reportedly switched off their meters to take people home. Credit: ITV News

City residents took to social media offering to take in any people left stranded after the explosion was reported.

Two hotels in the area - Holiday Inn and Premier Inn - also reportedly took in dozens of children who became separated from family and friends with the hashtag #RoomForManchester being widely shared.

Taxi drivers also reportedly switched off their meters to take people home

  • What was Ariana Grande's response?
Ariana Grande has gigs scheduled at London's O2 later this week. Credit: PA

Pop star Ms Grande, who was not injured, said she is "broken" after the attack on her fans.

The 23-year-old wrote on Twitter: "Broken. From the bottom of my heart, I am so so sorry. I don't have words".

London's O2 Arena has indicated two of Ms Grande's shows due to take place later this week may be cancelled or postponed after the deadly attack.

  • What was the international reaction to the attack?

US President Donald Trump condemned the people who commit terror atrocities as "evil losers" as he offered his "deepest condolences" during an official visit to Bethlehem.

"So many young beautiful innocent people living and enjoying their lives murdered by evil losers in life," he said.

Newly-elected French president Emmanuel Macron said his "thoughts are with the British people" while European Commission President Jean Claude Junker sent condolences to the prime minister for the "brutal attack".

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German Chancellor Angela Merkel was also among the world leaders offering their condolences and expressing a determination to fight acts of terror in the wake of the attack.

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