Horrors of Manchester

Fred Wesley | Wednesday, May 24, 2017
As the people of Britain slowly come to terms with Monday's bombing in Manchester, we join our Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama in expressing horror over the incident.

Mr Bainimarama sent condolences to the British Prime Minister, Theresa May, following the attack after an Ariana Grande concert.

By last night the death toll sat at 22 with 59 people injured.

As the PM said, to target innocent young people attending a concert is an especially terrible crime.

The thoughts and prayers of every Fijian, he said, are with the families of the victims and those who have been injured.

Fiji, he said, stood "shoulder to shoulder with the United Kingdom in our determination to defeat the terrorist threat".

"Our warm friendship is rooted not only in our historical ties, but in our shared values. And we stand ready to support you in any way we can," he said.

The explosion, triggered by a suspected suicide bomber, happened at the end of a concert by US singer Grande. There was a scene of pandemonium and mayhem in the wake of the explosion.

PM May said the incident was being treated as a terrorist attack and, if confirmed, she said it would be the deadliest militant assault on Britain since the death of 52 people in suicide bombings on London's transport system in July 2005.

Britain has been at heightened terrorism alert level "severe" since 2014, which is one level below "critical".

As investigations continue to determine the type of device used in the attack, and to try and piece together the events leading up to the explosion, there will be great interest on the outcome.

The fact that no group or individual took responsibility for the attack when this edition went to press last night was disturbing. We are left to wonder how anyone could do such a terrible thing.

It is frightening to even contemplate how teenagers, children, and adults reacted as the explosion went off, and in the aftermath, with scenes of blood and chaos.

Barely minutes earlier, there had been scenes of joy and laughter.

In this instance, horror knows no bounds.

There must be no room for such actions. Those responsible have no sense of respect for life. They are ruthless. Such actions must be strongly condemned.

We are blessed that we live in a multi-racial country free of such horrific scenes.

To that end, we must continue to embrace multi-racialism and learn to appreciate who we are. Perhaps it is apt that we should look around us and appreciate the many good things we sometimes take for granted.

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