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UK stops sharing data on bombing with US after leaks

Police investigate the house which reportedly belongs to the suicide bomber of Manchester Arena Salmon Abedi on May 24, 2017 [Behlül Çetinkaya/Anadolu Agency]

The New York Times yesterday published forensic photographs of the device that killed 22 people in the Manchester bombing in the latest in a series of leaks to US journalists thought to be from the US intelligence community.

Salman Abedi, Manchester Arena suicide bomber, May 22, 2017 [Twitter]

Image of Salman Abedi, Manchester Arena suicide bomber, May 22, 2017 [Twitter]

The images show remnants of the rucksack which contained the bomb, screws and nuts which were parts of the shrapnel and a map showing the position of the victims who were in a circle around the bomber. The paper described them as “law enforcement images”.

Britain has declared the disclosure completely unacceptable and admitted they are furious because of the distress it will cause the families of the victims and the risk of complicating ongoing investigations.

Read: Manchester bomber likely did not act alone says UK minister 

According to the BBC, as a result of the leaks, the UK is no longer sharing information on the bombing with the US.

The data had been shared between the UK and the US as part of security cooperation between the two countries whose intelligence links are some of the closest in the world. Just hours before the images were published, US security services leaked the bomber’s name – Salman Abedi – to the American media before it was made public in Britain.

UK Prime Minister, Theresa May, is expected to raise concerns over the intelligence leaks with US President, Donald Trump, at the NATO summit in Brussels, Belgium, today.

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