NEWS

Birmingham Vigil For Manchester Bombing Victims Interrupted By Axe-Wielding Man

A man has been arrested.

23/05/2017 19:41 | Updated 24 May 2017

A vigil in Birmingham for the Manchester Arena bombing victims has been interrupted after a man armed with an axe was detained nearby.

Footage from the scene shows police surrounding the man as loud shouting can be heard.

The 39-year-old Birmingham man – who is known to police and is thought to have a history of mental ill-health - was arrested on suspicion of possession of an offensive weapon, West Midlands Police said in a statement.

Superintendent Andy Parsons said: “Officers spotted the man acting suspiciously and spoke to him. At this point they have arrested him. 

“The man was carrying a bag, and as a precaution, Victoria Square where the vigil was being held was cleared for around 15 minutes.

“A small axe was recovered along with a large stick.”

The vigil saw faith and civic leaders as well as police and the public from across the city gather to pay tribute to the 22 dead and 59 gravely injured victims of last night’s terror attack at the Manchester Arena. 

The perpetrator of the suicide bombing has been named as Manchester-born Salman Abedi, 22.

Vigils have been held across the country - in Manchester poet Tony Walsh wowed the crowd with an incredible ode to the city.

WHAT WE KNOW SO FAR:

  • 22 people were killed and 59 injured in Manchester Arena suicide attack.
  • British police identify attacker as Manchester-born Salman Abedi, 22.
  • Abedi was known to British authorities prior to the attack, CBS reported.
  • It is not known if he was acting alone or as part of a larger network.
  • So-called Islamic State group have claimed responsibility for the blast.
  • A 23-year-old man has also been arrested in connection with the attack.
  • Lone male attacker died in the blast at the Ariana Grande concert.
  • Was carrying an improvised explosive device which he detonated.
  • Youngest victim named as eight-year-old Saffie Rose Roussos.
  • Georgina Callander, 18 and John Atkinson, 28, were also killed.
  • Many children are known to be amongst those killed and injured.
  • The blast took place in the foyer area as concert finished at 10:30pm.
  • Theresa May: attack ‘among the worst terrorism we have experienced’
  • All General Election campaigning has been suspended indefinitely.

EDITOR’S NOTE: An earlier version of this story stated the man was carrying a “large knife” citing initial reports. 

 
 
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