The Greater Manchester Police said it received reports of an explosion at Manchester Arena shortly before 10:35 p.m. local time. (5:35 p.m. EST). Grande’s concert had just ended when the suicide bomber blew himself up.
“This is the most horrific incident we have had to face in Greater Manchester and one that we all hoped we would never see,” said Greater Manchester Police Chief Ian Hopkins on Tuesday in a statement.
“Families and many young people were out to enjoy a concert at the Manchester Arena and have lost their lives,” he added. “Our thoughts are with those 22 victims that we now know have died, the 59 people who have been injured and their loved ones.”
Grande was not hurt during the attack. She wrote on her Twitter page that she is “broken.”
from the bottom of my heart, i am so so sorry. i don't have words.
— Ariana Grande (@ArianaGrande) May 23, 2017
British Prime Minister Theresa May in a statement said authorities “are working to establish the full details of what is being treated by police as an appalling terrorist attack.”
“All our thoughts are with the victims and the families of those who have been affected,” she said, according to the Independent.
Human Rights Campaign President Chad Griffin on his Twitter page said his heart “is with everyone in Manchester tonight.”
“We stand with you — and against hate,” he said.
The explosion took place less than a month before the first anniversary of the massacre at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Fla., that left 49 people dead and more than 50 others injured.
Barbara Poma, who owns the Pulse nightclub, on Monday posted onto her Facebook page a picture that said, “We will not let hate win.” It was written with colors of the British flag.
Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo also expressed her condolences to the victims and their families.
— Anne Hidalgo (@Anne_Hidalgo) May 23, 2017
Three gunmen killed 89 people inside the Bataclan concert hall in Paris’ 10th arrondissement on Nov. 13, 2015. The siege was part of a series of attacks on the same day that left more than 100 people dead in the French capital.
The so-called Islamic State claimed responsibility for the Paris attacks. ISIS on Tuesday claimed responsibility for the Manchester bombing.
The Washington Blade will provide additional updates as they become available.