Britain says some of Manchester bomber's network potentially still at large

Police released a picture showing Adebi before the attack.

Members of the network behind the Manchester bomb attack could still be at large within the United Kingdom, as Home Secretary Amber Rudd warned, despite eleven arrests, the investigation in to who assisted bomber Salman Abedi is still at "full tilt".

The 22-year-old Briton of Libyan descent died in Monday's explosion, which killed 22 people and wounded dozens as crowds were leaving an Ariana Grande concert.

Britain on Saturday lowered its security threat level to "severe" following significant activity by police investigating the suicide bomb attack on a pop concert in Manchester on Monday night.

British police now have 12 suspects in custody - including Abedi's elder brother Ismail - and have searched properties across the northwest England city.

"The public should be clear about what this means".

After the bombing Britain raised its official threat status from terrorism to the top level, "critical" - meaning another attack may be imminent. "The country should remain vigilant".

Two unarmed police officers remained on guard outside the entrance to Granby House, believed to contain the flat in question, according to an AFP correspondent at the scene.

British officials confirmed that Abedi recently returned from Libya on May 18, and that police were seeking more information about his movements upon his return.

Police have released surveillance-camera images of Abedi on the night of the attack and appealed for more information about his final days.

Manchester is slowly returning to normal, though dozens of people remain hospitalized and the damaged arena and adjacent Victoria train station remain closed. "The flat is highly relevant as a location which we believe may be the final assembly place for the device".

"What we do know, in engaging with the intelligence services and with the police and with the Border Force, we make sure that they have the tools to track them and to keep them out where we can", Rudd said of those who may have be aiming to return to Britain.

A third of those killed in Monday's bombing were children, and another 116 people were injured.

Rudd said Britain was making good progress with internet firms but that more needed to be done. "There is still much more to do". More arrests are expected.

Police said on Saturday that overnight they had made two further arrests as they closed in on other possible cell members.

Earlier this week a source with knowledge of the matter told Reuters the security services were managing 500 active operations involving some 3,000 people thought to pose a threat.

Hundreds of soldiers have been sent to replace police at high-profile sites including Buckingham Palace and Parliament, and police armed with submachine guns are being deployed in city centres, transit hubs, tourist areas and major events.

Grande, meanwhile, promised to return to "the incredibly fearless city of Manchester" to hold a benefit concert for the victims.

While police and politicians have praised communities in Manchester for their reaction to the bombing, Hopkins said there had been a rise in reported hate crimes, from an average of 28 to 56 incidents on Wednesday.

May has seen her polling lead against the Labour party's Jeremy Corbyn dwindle as campaigning restarted ahead of a June 8 general election, with her rival accusing her of overseeing a cut in police staff while she was interior minister.

  • Zachary Reyes