PARIS: World leaders have swiftly condemned Monday’s (May 22) deadly blast at Manchester Arena, which British police are treating as a “terrorist incident”.
At least 22 people were killed, including children, and nearly 60 others injured, after a lone attacker detonated an improvised explosive device he was carrying outside the venue where American singer Ariana Grande had been performing.
British Prime Minister Theresa May called it an “appalling terrorist attack”. This is the deadliest attack in the country since the bombing of London’s transport system in July 2005.
US President Donald Trump extended his condolences on Tuesday to the victims of the Manchester suicide bombing and said those behind the attack were “evil losers”.
Trump was speaking after talks with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the town of Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank, and said the US stands in “absolute solidarity” with the British people.
“I extend my deepest condolences to those so terribly injured in this terrorist attack, and to the many killed and the families, so many families of the victims,” Trump said. “So many young, beautiful innocent people living and enjoying their lives murdered by evil losers in life.”
French President Emmanuel Macron expressed compassion and solidarity with Britain in a statement on Tuesday. He will hold a telephone call with Prime Minister May in the wake of the Manchester attack.
“The President of the Republic will pursue with the government, and with British forces, the fight against terrorism,” said the statement.
French Prime Minister Edouard Philippe described the attack as an “abominable crime”, and called on French citizens to be vigilant.
“The most cowardly form of terrorism has struck once again, targeting – as in Paris more than a year ago – a concert venue,” Philippe said in a statement, in a reference to a similar attack at the Bataclan concert hall in Paris in November 2015.
Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull called the attack “especially vile” as it appeared to have deliberately targeted teenagers.
Speaking in the House of Representatives, Turnbull spoke of Australia’s resolute solidarity with the people of the United Kingdom as “steadfast allies in freedom’s cause,” in the presence of Britain’s Deputy High Commissioner to Australia, Ingrid Southwarth.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said he was ready to boost anti-terror cooperation with Britain in a condolence message to Prime Minister Theresa May over the “inhuman” attack in Manchester.
“We firmly condemn this cynical, inhuman crime. We expect that those behind it will not escape the punishment they deserve,” Putin said in a statement published by the Kremlin.
Chinese President Xi Jinping sent a message to Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II, expressing deep condolences to the victims, and sympathy to the injured and the bereaved families.
He said China stands firmly together with the British people during this difficult time.
Meanwhile, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak expressed his condolences on twitter and said he was “appalled” by the “barbaric and cowardly” attack.
He added that Malaysia stands united with Britain, and that governments must be firm and decisive in confronting terror.
Singapore said it “strongly condemns” the bomb attack at Manchester Arena.
“”We express our deepest condolences to the bereaved families and wish the injured a swift recovery,” said a statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.