A 24-year-old, from the Fallowfield area of Manchester, was arrested “shortly after arriving back in the UK” and remains in custody for questioning, according to a Friday statement from the Greater Manchester Police.
The statement did not specify from where he was traveling.
On May 22, 2017, Salman Abedi detonated a bomb which killed 22 concertgoers and injured hundreds more — many of them children and young people — as they left Manchester Arena after an Ariana Grande concert.
The explosion took place shortly after Grande had finished her closing set. Fans were beginning to leave the arena when a bomb detonated inside the arena’s foyer.
In March 2020, Abedi’s younger brother Hashem Abedi was convicted of 22 counts of murder, one count of attempted murder and a charge of conspiracy to cause an explosion for helping his older brother construct the bombing device.
The two brothers grew up in Manchester with parents who had fled Libya under the late Moammar Gadhafi. Their father, Ramadan, returned to Libya in 2011 after rebels overthrew the government. His wife joined him in early 2017.
The brothers traveled to Libya together in April 2017 to see family. However, after three weeks, Salman returned to the UK and within days, launched his attack on the Manchester Arena.
In 2018, a UK Parliamentary report found British security services missed opportunities to prevent the attack.
Simon Barraclough, the senior investigating officer for the investigation, said in a police press release Friday, authorities remain “firmly committed to establishing the truth surrounding the circumstances of the terror attack at the Manchester Arena – whether that is by supporting the ongoing public inquiry or by continuing to pursue leads with regards to the criminal investigation.”
“Over four years have passed since the atrocity took place but we are unwavering in our dedication to follow each line of enquiry available so that we can provide all those affected by the events at the arena with the answers they rightly deserve,” Barraclough said.