Over 250 Manchester Bombing Survivors Sue UK Intelligence Agency MI5

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Survivors of the 2017 Ariana Grande concert bombing in Manchester, England, have launched a legal claim against MI5, citing the intelligence agency’s failure to act on crucial information that could have prevented the attack. The claim involves more than 250 individuals affected by the tragedy.

Over 250 survivors of the 2017 bombing at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England, which resulted in 22 fatalities, have initiated legal proceedings against Britain’s MI5, according to statements from their attorneys. The legal teams from three different law firms have collectively filed a claim with the U.K.’s investigatory powers tribunal, though details remain limited due to the ongoing nature of the case.

The attack occurred on May 22, 2017, when suicide bomber Salman Abedi detonated a backpack bomb at Manchester Arena as the concert audience, predominantly young fans, was exiting. The explosion injured over 100 individuals, including many children and teenagers, and also claimed Abedi’s life.

A subsequent official investigation revealed shortcomings within MI5, Britain’s domestic intelligence service, particularly in their response to critical intelligence. The report highlighted that MI5 had previously identified Abedi as a “subject of interest” in 2014, but his file was closed after he was assessed as a low risk. Furthermore, the inquiry disclosed that an MI5 officer had recognized intelligence related to Abedi as a potential national security threat but failed to act swiftly enough in sharing this information with colleagues.

MI5’s director, Ken McCallum, expressed deep regret over these failures, issuing a rare televised apology: “I am profoundly sorry that MI5 did not prevent the attack.” This legal action underscores the continuing repercussions and demands for accountability following one of the U.K.’s most severe extremist attacks in recent history.

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