Theresa May to confront Trump on Manchester attack leaks

Share

Police in Manchester, England, will stop sharing intelligence with the US about the arena bombing following a string of leaks to American media outlets, the BBC reported Thursday.

"While we do not usually comment on information-sharing arrangements. having received fresh assurances, we are now working closely with our key partners around the world including all those in the "Five Eyes" intelligence alliance", said Mark Rowley, Britain's lead officer for counter-terrorism policing.

British Prime Minister Theresa May, who spoke about the matter with US President Donald Trump at a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in Brussels, said the countries' partnership on defense and security was built on trust.

British officials are particularly angry that photos detailing evidence about the bomb used in the Manchester attack were published in The New York Times, although it's not clear that the paper obtained the photos from USA officials.

British security services were also upset that 22-year-old Abedi's name was apparently leaked by U.S. officials while police in the United Kingdom continued withholding it and while raids were underway in Manchester and in Libya.

The BBC said Manchester police hoped to resume normal intelligence relationships soon but were furious about the leaks.

Police are hunting for a possible bomb-maker after the 22-year-old attacker, British-born Salman Abedi, detonated a sophisticated device at a concert venue packed with children on Monday night, killing 22 people and injuring 64.

The body said it underminded the current investigation, and affected the confidence of witnesses, victims, and all the families affected. Both Republicans and Democrats in the U.S. Congress said the relationship with Britain was too valuable to undermine with leaks."If they don't feel comfortable sharing information, that can be a significant obstacle in terms of the worldwide terror fight", said Senator Ron Wyden, a Democrat on the Senate Intelligence Committee.

More news: George W. Bush's NATO ambassador slams Trump's visit with the alliance
More news: North Atlantic Treaty Organisation allies need 'to pay their fair share: Prez Trump
More news: Taiwan Will Be The First Asian Country To Legalise Same-sex Marriage

"There is no relationship we cherish more than the special relationship between the USA and the United Kingdom", he added.

"We have strong and close ties with our (British) friends", he told reporters, reading from a statement.

"Innocent little girls and so many others were horribly murdered and badly injured whilst attending a concert", he said. "This is British intelligence at the end of the day, people shouldn't be finding out about this". But leaks from the investigation were creating a trans-Atlantic diplomatic mess.

British police have arrested two more men in connection with the Manchester attack, taking the number of people in custody to eight, Greater Manchester police said. It also said he passed through Duesseldorf airport four days before the concert attack.

Whitehall sources say he was among a "large pool of people whose risk was kept under review" by security services.

- An 18-year-old man, who police said was carrying a suspect package, is arrested in Wigan, a town near Manchester.

In the Libyan capital Tripoli, Abedi's younger brother Hashem, 20, and their father, Ramadan, were held by special forces linked to the interior ministry. A woman was also arrested but has since been released.

Raids involving controlled explosions have been carried out at flats in the city centre and at an address in the Moss Side area of Manchester.

Share