Manchester attack: Who is Salman Abedi?

Posted at 12:11 AM, May 24, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-24 00:11:26-04

Police have named 22-year-old Salman Abedi as the man suspected of carrying out the deadliest terror attack to hit the UK in 12 years.

At least 22 people were killed and 59 injured after a bomb exploded outside the Manchester Arena on Monday night, as concertgoers — many of them children and young people — were leaving an Ariana Grande show.

Abedi is believed to have died in the powerful blast, though he has not yet been formally identified by the coroner, Manchester police said.

Speaking at a news conference Tuesday afternoon, Chief Constable Ian Hopkins said that the force was working to determine whether others were also involved in the attack.

“The priority remains to establish whether he was acting alone or as part of a network,” Hopkins said.

Suspected bomber was born in the UK

Salman Abedi was born and raised in the United Kingdom, according to Prime Minister Theresa May, but was of Libyan descent.

Abedi had seemed like a lonely child, who kept himself to himself, according to long-time family friend Akram Ben Ramadan, a British Libyan who had known Abedi and his brother, Ismael, since the Abedis were children.

Ramadan, who had not seen Abedi much in recent years, had noticed that Abedi had begun to dress “Islamically,” in a long robe, and was growing a beard.

Members of Manchester’s Libyan community told CNN Abedi’s father returned to Libya at the time of the revolution in 2011, while his mother stayed in England to care for the children.

She went back to Libya in the past few months, said Ramadan. There were four children in the family, including Abedi — three boys and one girl.

Abedi was a student at the University of Salford — Manchester’s third largest university — where he studied business and management in the 2015-2016 academic year. He was enrolled for a second year, but hadn’t been attending classes, nor had he been active in school life, according to those who knew him.

Abedi, did not live on campus in Salford, and instead resided in South Manchester, an area popular with young people and college students.