World

Manchester bomber was known to security services

MANCHESTER: Salman Abedi, 22, the suicide bomber, had dropped out of university.

Born to a devoutly Islamic Libyan family in Manchester, he was known to the security services, newspapers reported.

The Financial Times said he had turned to radical Islam in recent years.

He was named by the British police and Prime Minister Theresa May yesterday.

"The perpetrator was Salman Ramadan Abedi, who was born and brought up in Britain," Ms May said, condemning his actions as "callous and cowardly".

Abedi's family has lived in the Fallowfield area of south Manchester for at least 10 years, according to The Daily Telegraph newspaper.

Police raided an address in the modestly well-to-do area on Tuesday, carrying out a controlled explosion to gain entry.

A 23-year-old man was also arrested in the south of the city in connection with the attack.

Fallowfield resident Peter Jones, 53, described the area as "quiet and safe". He told AFP he was "shocked" when he heard that the suspect was from there.

Abedi had recently returned from Libya, according to The Financial Times yesterday, which cited a school friend as saying he left three weeks ago and returned in the last few days.

Police said they are urgently seeking to establish whether Abedi worked alone or acted as part of a larger network.

Abedi's family are closely linked to the Didsbury Mosque, where senior figure Mohammed Saeed told The Guardian that when he once gave a sermon denouncing terror, Abedi stared him down.

"(Abedi) showed me a face of hate after that sermon," he said of the 2015 encounter.

"He was showing me hatred." - AFP

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