Father of suspected Manchester bomber says son is innocent

British police have stopped sharing information on the Manchester suicide bombing with the United States, the BBC reports, because of fears leaks in the American media could hinder a hunt for a possible bomb maker.

Officials believe the suicide bomber responsible for Monday's attack, 22-year-old Salman Abedi, was part of a network.

The BBC reported that security services thought the bomb was too sophisticated for Abedi to have built by himself.

Officials are particularly angry that photos detailing evidence about the bomb were published in the New York Times.

Manchester police halted their sharing of investigative information with the US through most of Thursday until receiving fresh assurance there would be an end to leaks to the media.

The suspect in the deadly Manchester concert bombing was driven by what he saw as unjust treatment of Arabs in Britain, a relative said Thursday, confirming he made a final phone call in which he pleaded: "Forgive me".


Rudd said she would not go so far as to say the investigation had been compromised by the leaks to the American media, but added that it has been made clear to US security services "that it shouldn't happen again". She concluded that it "should not happen again".

May is expected to raise the matter with U.S. President Donald Trump when she meets him at a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation meeting later Thursday in Brussels.

"When that trust is breached it undermines these relationships and undermines our investigations and the confidence of victims, witnesses and their families".

"These searches are connected to Monday's attack on the Manchester Arena, but this is a fast-moving investigation and we are keeping an open mind at this stage".

An off-duty female police officer was among those slain in the Manchester terrorist attack, Greater Manchester Chief Constable Ian Hopkins said Wednesday. Police arrested two further suspects on Thursday morning, bringing the total number of arrests to eight, including a woman and Abedi's brother.

The Special Deterrent force said in a statement on its Facebook page that Hashim Abedi had told investigators after his arrest that both he and his brother belonged to the Islamic State group. The government Tuesday night raised the threat to "critical", its highest level, following an emergency Cabinet session. "This is not us", he said.


The New York Times defended publishing the material, saying in a statement that "the images and information presented were neither graphic nor disrespectful of victims".

The former official added "They just blabbermouth it and it's really, really unhelpful", calling the British "pretty disciplined" by comparison. "He was in contact with his brother and he knew about the attack".

Trump pledged to "get to the bottom" of the leaks, calling them "deeply troubling" and asking the Justice Department and other agencies to "launch a complete review of this matter". "I think there is another kind of tradition in Europe than in the United States on that level", he added.

Trump was widely criticised this month after it emerged he had discussed sensitive Syria-related intelligence, originating from an ally, with Russian officials at a White House meeting.

USA officials later leaked that the ally in question was Israel.

Britain and the USA have traditionally shared intelligence at the highest levels and - together with Canada, Australia and New Zealand - are members of the "Five Eyes" intelligence-sharing alliance.


Interior minister Amber Rudd confirmed on Wednesday that Abedi was known to intelligence services and that it was "likely" he was not working alone.


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