Manchester Arena Terror Victims to Sue MI5 Intelligence Agency For Failing to Prevent Islamist Attack

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MAY 23: Members of the public attend a candlelit vigil, to honour th
Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

In an unprecedented move, hundreds of survivors of the Islamist terror attack on the Manchester Arena have launched a lawsuit against Britain’s domestic MI5 intelligence agency over what they claim are serious failures to prevent the attack.

More than 250 survivors and family members of victims of the 2017 terror attack in Manchester have banded together and submitted a lawsuit against the Security Service to the Investigatory Powers Tribunal (IPT), an independent judicial body tasked with considering complaints made against British intelligence agencies.

According to The Telegraph, the move is the first time in which citizens have sued an intelligence service for failing to prevent a terror attack.

The victims are reported to be planning to appeal to the “right to life” of the Human Rights Act, which they will argue was violated by negligence on the behalf of intelligence officers in failing to stop the attack.

In a joint statement, the legal team representing the victims from Broudie Jackson Canter, Hudgell Solicitors, and Slater and Gordon said:  “Legal teams representing injured survivors of the Manchester Arena bombing in 2017 can confirm that they have collectively submitted a group claim on behalf of more than 250 clients to the IPT.

“As it is an ongoing legal matter, we are unable [to] provide any further details, or comment further, at this stage.”

The 2017 suicide bombing by Libyan migrant Salman Abedi saw 22 killed, many of them children and young people, and hundreds more injured after he detonated an explosive device at the Manchester Arena, which was full at the time for an Ariana Grande concert.

Since then, numerous inquiries have been held, accusing widespread failures at all levels, from the security guardshired to protect the Manchester Arena who failed to intervene for fear of being called racist, to the Manchester Police, and even the intelligence services.

A report from Manchester Arena Inquiry chairman Sir John Saunders found that at least one MI5 officer had delayed sharing intelligence which he said represented a “significant missed opportunity to take action that might have prevented the attack”.

It has also been claimed that MI5 had flagged the would-be terrorist 18 times over the seven years leading up to the attack and that Abedi was also known to have had relationships with six other people being watched by MI5 prior to the attack.

According to the BBC, MI5 had also allegedly received intelligence linking Abedi to a bomb plot in the months leading up to the attack, however, such warnings were reportedly dismissed as “unreliable”.

Last year, MI5 Director General Ken McCallum apologised on behalf of the agency for failing to prevent the attack, saying: “Gathering covert intelligence is difficult, but had we managed to seize the slim chance we had, those impacted might not have experienced such appalling loss and trauma.

“I am profoundly sorry that MI5 did not prevent the attack.”

However, Andrew Russo, whose eight-year-old daughter Saffie was the youngest victim of the attack, previously said that suing the intelligence agency would be the “only way” for them to learn a lesson.

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Authored by Kurt Zindulka via Breitbart April 14th 2024