MANCHESTER • Counter-terrorism police investigating the Manchester bombing conducted new raids yesterday, as security services braced themselves for more attacks during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan starting today.
Searches were carried out early yesterday at a Manchester barbershop and an eatery in Merseyside, The Daily Telegraph reported.
A working bomb factory with a big stash of explosive chemicals was found in an earlier raid at the home of bomber Salman Abedi, raising fears that he might have made a second explosive device that is now held by other terrorists.
The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), which claimed responsibility earlier for Monday's attack which killed at least 22 people in a packed concert hall in Manchester, has called for "all-out war" on the West at the start of Ramadan.
"Muslim brothers in Europe who can't reach the Islamic State lands, attack them in their homes, their markets, their roads and their forums," the extremist group said in a message titled "Where Are The Lions Of War?" and put up on YouTube, said The Daily Telegraph.
Britain's threat level will remain at its highest level - critical - meaning that an attack is expected imminently, Reuters reported Home Secretary Amber Rudd as saying yesterday.
Opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn yesterday linked British military action abroad to terrorism at home, and criticised Prime Minister Theresa May's government for squeezing police and prison budgets, as campaigning for the June 8 general election resumed four days after the Manchester attack.
S'pore 'has increased threat level assessment'
Home Affairs and Law Minister K. Shanmugam yesterday reminded Singaporeans to be vigilant following the militant attacks in Britain and Indonesia.
In a Facebook post accompanied by a photograph of a girl who died in the attack on Monday in Manchester, he said: "The terror attacks in the past week, in Indonesia and the United Kingdom, claimed many innocent lives. To me, the picture of this eight-year-old victim, Saffie Roussos, shows how evil the attackers are - does this girl deserve to die? It is heartrending to see such loss."
He said Singapore has stepped up patrols and checks which may lead to delays for some travellers.
"We have increased our threat level assessment. Our security agencies have stepped up checks and patrols across Singapore, including our land, air and sea checkpoints. This may mean delays. With the school holidays around the corner, travellers should factor this in.
"Whether you are travelling or in Singapore, stay vigilant."
He sought to seize on a poll showing the Conservative lead falling to 5 percentage points - its narrowest since Mrs May became prime minister last July, Bloomberg reported.
But Mr Corbyn drew flak instantly from the Conservatives, with Security Minister Ben Wallace calling his speech "inappropriate and crassly timed".
As investigations into the bombing continued, a 10th person - a 30-year-old man - was taken into custody yesterday. In total, eight men are now in custody, after a man and a woman were released without charge, Greater Manchester police said in a tweet.
The eight, held "on suspicion of offences contrary to the Terrorism Act" in relation to Monday's atrocity, which killed 22 people - including seven children - are aged between 18 and 38, said police.
On Tuesday, masked police arrested a 24-year-old man in the Chorlton area of south Manchester, near where Abedi is said to have lived. Police had earlier given the man's age as 23.
British media indicated that this man is highly likely to be Abedi's older brother Ismail. The brother was described in media reports as "outgoing" compared with Salman, who was "very quiet", Agence France-Presse reported.
Officers continued searches yesterday in a bid to find out if 22-year-old Abedi, whose parents are Libyan, was supported by a wider network. Abedi's father and another brother are in detention in Libya. Abedi reportedly returned from Libya only a few days before the attack, but police are still trying to pin down his movements.
Libya's Special Deterrence Force, which acts as the police of the Tripoli-based Government of National Accord, arrested Abedi's father Ramadan, saying it had arrested Abedi's brother Hashem on Tuesday. A spokesman said the brother was aware of Abedi's attack plan, and both belonged to ISIS.