Brother of Manchester bomber to deny murdering 22 victims of arena terror attack

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The brother of Manchester Arena bomber Salman Abedi has indicated he will deny helping him to murder 22 people in the 2017 terror attack.

Hashem Abedi, 22, stood in the dock at Westminster Magistrates’ Court as the names of each fatality were read aloud.

His counsel, Zafar Ali QC, said the defendant denied the charges against him. No formal pleas were entered during the 15-minute hearing.

Abedi, who was raised in Manchester, travelled to Libya before his older brother detonated his suicide vest as pop fans left an Ariana Grande concert.

Prosecutor Kathryn Selby told the court that Abedi had been charged with 22 counts of murder – one for each victim of the attack – plus one count of attempted murder encompassing all other victims, and one count of conspiring with his brother to cause explosions.

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Manchester Arena bombing
Manchester Arena suicide bomber Salman Abedi (PA)

The court heard that 260 people were seriously injured, including those with life-changing injuries, following the blast.

At least 600 people reported psychological harm, the court was told.

Manchester Arena incident
People look at flowers and tributes left in St Ann’s Square in Manchester following the Manchester Arena terror attack (Danny Lawson/PA)

Mr Ali told the court that his client had been in solitary confinement since his arrest in Libya two years ago, and had been tortured by the Special Deterrence Force in Tripoli, also known as Rada.

He said Abedi was forced to sign a 40-page confession under extreme duress.

He added that his client did not contest extradition because he wanted to return to the UK to clear his name.

Chief Magistrate Emma Arbuthnot remanded him in custody ahead of a bail hearing at Oxford Crown Court on Monday.

There will be a preliminary hearing at the Old Bailey on July 30.

Inquests into the killings have been on hold while criminal proceedings against Abedi remained in limbo.

Abedi gave his name and date of birth to the court and confirmed his nationality as British.

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  • Show Comments
    1. What needs to come out are the connections between MI5, the LIFG, IS, and the open door policy of allowing members of a formerly designated terrorist organisation to go to Libya for the purposes of fighting Gaddafi, and then return:

      “Rebels living in England have claimed the UK Government waived travel bans to let them fight Colonel Gaddafi in Libya as investigators probe the Manchester bomber’s visits to Tripoli.

      Fighters which included Libyan exiles and British-Libyan residents have described how MI5 operated an open door policy for those willing to travel to North Africa to topple the dictator.

      It comes as Home Secretary Amber Rudd admitted Salman Abedi, who killed 22 and injured at least 119 people when he blew himself up at Manchester Arena, was known to counter-terror authorities.

      Those who travelled to Libya to fight alongside Islamic rebel groups have described how, even though they were subject to counter-terror orders banning them from leaving their homes because they posed a security threat, they were allowed to travel to the hostile warzone.

      When they returned to the UK, having spent months alongside groups thought by British intelligence to have links with Al-Qaeda, rebels were said to have been allowed back into the country without hesitation.”

      The story of this, including reference to this article, is outlined in the latest edition of Mark Curtis’ book, ‘Secret Affairs – Britain’s collusion with radical Islam’. So far, I haven’t heard a single news outlet make any reference to this aspect of the case.

      https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4540822/Rebels-went-Libya-MI5-blessing-amid-Abedi-probe.html

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