An explosion at the end of Ariana Grande’s concert at Manchester Arena in Manchester, England on Monday night has resulted in 22 confirmed fatalities.
“There are a number of confirmed fatalities and others injured,” the Greater Manchester Police posted on Twitter. The explosion, which took place in the foyer area that is semi-public, occurred at 10:33 p.m. local time. The type of bomb hasn’t been confirmed but injuries are reportedly in line with the sort caused by shrapnel, or a nail bomb.
In addition to the 22 people confirmed dead, 59 others have been injured and taken to eight hospitals across the city, confirmed prime minister Theresa May in a statement outside 10 Downing Street on Tuesday morning.
“It is now beyond doubt that the people of Manchester and of this country have fallen victim to a callous terrorist attack,” May said. “An attack that targeted some of the youngest people in our society with cold calculation.”
The Islamic State claimed responsibility for the Manchester attack on Tuesday.
The prime minister said that a single terrorist detonated an improvised explosive device near one of the exits with the aim of causing as much damage as possible. A 23-year-old man has been arrested by Greater Manchester Police in South Manchester.
The first named victim is 18-year-old Georgina Callander, a student in her second year of a health and social care course at Runshaw College in Lancashire. Eight-year-old Saffie Rose Roussos from Leyland was also named as one of the 22 who died in the attack. Twelve of the 59 injured in the attack were under 16, the North West Ambulance Service reported.
U.S. officials say some of the deaths and injuries might have resulted from the ensuing stampede of thousands, reports NBC News. President Donald Trump, in Israel Monday, described the perpetrators as “evil losers” and extended his deepest condolences to those injured and killed in the attack.
Queen Elizabeth II thanked the emergency services for their professionalism and care, and expressed admiration for the people of Manchester.
“I know I speak for everyone in expressing my deepest sympathy to all who have been affected by this dreadful event and especially to the families and friends of those who have died or were injured,” she said.
Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police Ian Hopkins gave a brief statement around 3 a.m. local time.
“We are currently treating this as a terrorist incident until we have further information,” Hopkins said. “We are working closely with national counterterrorism policing network and UK intelligence partners.”
“It was like something out of a film.”
Video from the arena shows chaotic scenes with screaming as attendees — many of them young children in terror — fled the arena.
“Basically, she finished her last song, ‘Dangerous Woman,’ the house lights came up, everyone started to walk out, and we heard really bass-y bang — people are saying there were two bangs, we only heard one — and then all I can remember is just everyone…it was absolutely hectic, it was just unreal, it was like something out of a film,” concert-goer Josh Elliot told the BBC. “Everyone was just charging toward the doors.”
“An explosion went off and it threw me … about thirty feet,” Andy Holey, who was waiting for his wife and daughter to exit the concert, told the BBC. “When I got up and looked around there was about 30 people scattered everywhere, some of them looked dead, might have been unconscious but there was a lot of fatalities.”
The largest indoor arena in the UK
Manchester Arena holds 21,000 people and is the largest indoor arena in the UK. British Transport Police say the blast came from “within the foyer area of the stadium at 10:30 p.m. this evening.”
At around 1:30 a.m. local time Tuesday, police told journalists that they had found a second suspected explosive device placed near the Manchester Victoria train station, which was closed immediately after the attack. Police explosive techs cleared the area around the device and performed a controlled explosion. It wasn’t a bomb, just “abandoned clothing.”
A representative for Grande said the pop singer was “okay.” The opening act, Bia, tweeted, “Guys we are ok! Thank you, we love you.”
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security said Monday there was no specific, credible threat against U.S. music venues in the wake of the attacks.
May said, “All our thoughts are with the victims and the families of those who have been affected.”
Grande was near the start of the Dangerous Woman world tour, which has dates scheduled through September and includes more than 35 shows.
Story is developing and will be updated as more information becomes available.