Return to Transcripts main page


Police: Eight People In Custody After Manchester Attack; Trump Promises To Investigate Leaks On Manchester Intel; U.K. Prime Minister: Partnership With U.S. Is Based On Trust; U.S. Official: Manchester Attacker Likely Had ISIS Training; Trump: NATO Allies Must Pay "Their Fair Share"; Queen Visits Survivors Calls Manchester Attack "Wicked"; Investigators Probe Bomber's Libya Connections; U.S. Candidate Allegedly Body Slams Reporter; Police Potentially Suspicious Items Found in Wigan, Aired 3-4p ET

Aired May 25, 2017 - 15:00:00   ET





HALA GORANI, CNN INTERNATIONAL ANCHOR: Hello, everyone. I'm Hala Gorani. We are in Manchester, a city still reeling from the horrific events of

Monday evening. This is a special edition of THE WORLD RIGHT NOW.

Well, it is still a packed square here, St. Anne Square, where this makeshift vigil emerged just hours after the horrific attack on the

Manchester arena. And minutes ago, we had a very touching scene, the stepfather of one of the 22 victims, 15-year-old Olivia Campbell and some

of his friends biked around the square, revving their engines.

They had pink ribbons tied to their scooters and motorcycles. And in fact, the parents of Olivia Campbell, her mother, Charlotte Campbell and her

stepfather, Paul as well, were applauded by the well-wishers in the square as people continue to feel the effects of this horrible attack.

But it has to be said, you really feel a sense of solidarity in this city as it is continues to process what happened on Monday night. You can also

feel the urgency of this investigation as police work to learn how and why a British national of Libyan dissent blew himself up at a pop concert in


Here is what we know. Now an American official tells CNN Salman Abedi likely had training inside Syria, and through that training ISIS set the

stage for the attack. This is what we are learning from American sources.

There have been two new arrests and a fresh raid bringing the total in custody to eight. U.K. police say there is no doubt this is now a

terrorist network.

British media are reporting that members of Manchester's Muslim community had warned authorities about Abedi. The Manchester Islamic Center will not

confirm this to CNN.

But a Birmingham-based Muslim community leader tells CNN that his sources say a warning was given about this specific individual. All right. The

CNN affiliate, ITV News is also reporting that the bomber called his parents in Libya just before the attack.

Atika Shubert is following the investigation. So from what we are hearing it appears as though this Abedi character called his mother just a few

hours before murdering 22 people.

ATIKA SHUBERT, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. This is the reports that we have been hearing from local media here citing Libyan

security sources, but to be honest, there is a lot of information flying around.

What we have been trying to do is to go to the different search sites here, we are actually standing right in front of the last known address of Salman

Abedi, but also talk to community leaders to find out who was Abedi associating with, what was he doing in the final days and weeks before the



SHUBERT (voice-over): Police raids and searches spread across Manchester, a city on edge as investigators now believe that the man behind the arena

bombing is not acting alone. Just weeks ago, Salman Abedi was in Libya taken out by his family the country to get him out of trouble at home in


The family according to a friend was concerned that he was involved with gangs. Two months ago, Abdullah Norris found Abedi hiding out in his

mosque. He thought Abedi was homeless.

ABDULLAH MUHSIN NORRIS, CHAIRMAN, SALAAM COMMUNITY MOSQUE: I talked to him and the way he behaved, he said, you should not shout at me, and I said I

shouted to you because you behaved like a child.

SHUBERT: Abedi's father says Salman told him he was going on a pilgrimage to Mecca. That was a lie. German police say he flew via Dusseldorf

Airport to Manchester just before the attack. Now, Turkish officials also say he traveled through Istanbul's Ataturk Airport recently. So when did

he obtained the bomb? Did he construct it himself or is there another bombmaker at large?

(on camera): The arena is still sealed off as a crime scene, but from here, we can actually see into the arena exit, and that is where the bomb

detonated. Those stairs and walkway that's where people tried to escape the blast.

[15:05:07]And even now we can see forensics team still working, trying to reconstruct what happened at the attack.

(voice-over): The "New York Times" obtained British police photos from the crime scene including remnants of the bomb parts. You can see shreds of

blue fabric from a backpack that may have carried the bomb. Also, what could be a small detonator with what the paper says is a circuit board


And according to the report, a 12-volt (inaudible) battery to power the bomb. Nuts, bolts and screws were found embedded in the bodies of victims,

doctors say. Investigators believed the bomb was packed with metals to inflict maximum casualties.

All of this seems to indicate a sophisticated improvised explosive. That is why investigators now believed Abedi mostly likely had the help of an

experienced bombmaker. Investigators are racing to find out who and where that person could be.


SHUBERT: Now what investigators are really searching for at this point is where that bomb might have been constructed. If they can find some sort of

trace of the explosives that were used, maybe one reason why we are seeing so many searches and raids, really, the frequency has increased in the last

day or so as the race against time to try and find out who constructed these bombs, this bomb, and how.

GORANI: All right. Thanks very much, Atika Shubert not far from where we are in Manchester. And you mentioned the bomb, and obviously many of our

viewers are aware that the "New York Times" published photographs of the aftermath of the bombing showing what appeared to be a detonator, a

backpack, a battery pack as well.

Those images were leaked by U.S. intelligence sources in America that has very much angered the United Kingdom, and Donald Trump who is in Brussels

at a NATO meeting promised to get to the bottom of those intelligence leaks over the Manchester attacks.

Now, the controversy following him to the NATO Summit. Today Manchester authorities are so angry about the leaks that in fact they have said, we

are suspending intelligence sharing with America over this attack.

British Prime Minister Theresa May raised the issue with Mr. Trump in Brussels as she promised to do.


THERESA MAY, BRITISH PRIME MINISTER: Shortly, I will be traveling to the NATO Summit where I will be working with international colleagues on

defeating terrorism. I will make clear to President Trump that intelligence that is shared between our law enforcement agencies must

remain secure.


GORANI: Now Manchester police won't comment on the photographs published by the "New York Times." They were apparently taken by British authorities

at the crime scene.

The American president, Donald Trump, said these leaks have been going on for a long time, and my administration will get to the bottom of this. The

leaks have sensitive information pose a grave threat to our national security.

That wasn't the only topic of discussion obviously in Brussels today. Let's get more now from Phil Black at that NATO Summit. We are also joined

by Fred Pleitgen in London.

So Phil, obviously all eyes were on the other world leaders, the counterparts of Donald Trump would greet him. Talk to us first about the

tensions with the British prime minister.

PHIL BLACK, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Donald Trump preempted Theresa May a little by releasing that statement part of which

you just read where he talked about how troubled he was by the leak, talked about it being a grave risk to national security, and promised to get to

the bottom of it and if necessary and appropriate prosecute those responsible.

He also stressed how important, and he said no more important relationship than the special relationship with Britain. We know that Donald Trump and

Theresa May had plenty of opportunity to talk to each other today, but that's according to Trump's spokesman.

But we have not been told precisely just what they have said to each other on this issue, but no doubt, Theresa May would have been significantly

satisfied to know that Donald Trump had already condemned the leak of this information and essentially promised to ensure that it won't happen again -

- Hala.

GORANI: Right. So we will get back to how to other leaders reacted to Donald Trump. All eyes were on how they would welcome the American


First, Fred, you are in London, how are other officials in the U.K. reacting to the leaks, because I mean, is it necessarily a good idea? Some

intelligence experts say it might not be to completely suspend cooperation with American intelligence over this attack?

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes, I mean, I don't think that is not something that the British authorities necessarily

want to do.

They certainly have been some members of parliament here in the U.K., who have questioned all of this, who have demanded a response from Theresa May,

which of course, they got when Theresa May, promised that she would go to Donald Trump and talk to him about all of this and say, look, the

relationship is built on trust and it has to be maintained.

The authorities here the U.K. have said that they will be suspending the intelligence communication on this specific topic, not in general, because

of course, these nations really are much closer in sharing intelligence than almost all other nations in the world.

[15:10:12]Nevertheless, it seems as though the authorities out there in Manchester have said, look, in this certain instance, it looks like the

U.S. and its leaks are a liability to this investigation.

They have said that they cannot risk giving information to the Americans anymore on this topic because they believe that it could hammer their

investigation. The mayor of Manchester is very vocal about this. Let's listen to some of what he had to say.


ANDY BURNHARM, GREATER MANCHESTER MAYOR: My message is quite forth, it is wrong, arrogant, and disrespectful to the people of Greater Manchester, but

particularly to those who lost loved ones and those who are injured and so I say to the U.S. government today from the very top, a statement must be

said that this is going to stop immediately.


PLEITGEN: So there you have some very strong words coming from the mayor of Manchester, and also of course come from some other politicians as well.

It is been interesting to see how the rhetoric has somewhat shifted here in Britain.

Because of course all of this is not just about that one leak to the "New York Times" in those photos, but originally also, the name of the suicide

bomber was also disclosed first to American media even when the Brits said they didn't want to disclose that name yet.

So I think it is sort of this stream of leaks that's been going on to make the authorities here very, very angry. They say it is a simply a liability

to an investigation, and of course, very, very active and important with possibly a terror cell capable of manufacturing some high grade explosives

still somewhere on the loose in Britain.

GORANI: And Phil, NATO was always going to be a tough visit for the U.S. president, President Trump. Obviously he famously called the alliance

obsolete, but we saw some remarkable images, one that appeared to show Trump shoving the Montenegrin leader out of the way to get to the front of


And another one where we saw what appeared to sort of incredulous European leaders listening to Donald Trump lecturing them about spending more on

defense. Was it as tense as it appeared in those images?

BLACK: Well, I think the other leaders expected Donald Trump to lecture them on not spending enough money on defense. I just don't think they

expected it to happen at precisely that moment while he was commemorating in what was supposed to be a somber, respectful, reflectful memorial, two

new memorials.

One of which included a fragment of the Berlin Wall, another section of the wall (inaudible) brought down on 9/11. He told them that they were being

unfair to American taxpayers because they were not paying in enough.

It sounded like the sort of language we heard from Donald Trump during his campaign. The reaction as the cameras moved across their faces, we saw

certain expressions, some wry smiles and we are pretty sure we saw an eye rolling there as well.

I think it was the moment more than the substance, and you are right. There was another awkward moment where Donald Trump seemed to be physically

pushing his way through the pack of leaders and actually seemed to physically shove the leader of Montenegro, (inaudible). He just seemed

very eager for some reason to return to the front of the pack -- Hala.

GORANI: Right. Quite welcome to NATO, I believe the next session is in June. Thanks very much. Phil Black is in Brussels and Fred Pleitgen is in


We are getting more details now about the bomber's alleged link to ISIS. A U.S. official says the early investigation shows Salman Abedi probably

received some training inside Syria.

Our Pentagon correspondent, Barbara Starr joins me now live with all the details. So Barbara, we know that the bomber travelled through Istanbul,

but how are they establishing the fact that he probably spent time inside of Syria?

BARBARA STARR, CNN PENTAGON CORRESPONDENT: Well, you remember shortly after all of this happened, French authorities had indicated that they had

information, very preliminary information that Salman Abedi had gone to both Libya and Syria, and now a U.S. official is saying that it looks like

the intelligence is showing that.

They are not being precise. A lot of sensitivity again about this intelligence, and the sharing between all of the governments involved, but

they do say that it now looks like he did travel to Syria sometime back.

You'll remember we know that he went to Libya for three weeks and returning to Manchester just a couple of days before the attack, and this travel to

Syria seems to have been some time before that.

And the belief is that he had at some point interacted with ISIS and got some training and support of some sort. Whether ISIS actually directed,

you know, the precise Manchester attack, I think it is more problematic.

These things tend to work out where they are inspired by their interaction with ISIS to go back to their home country and carry out violent attacks,

but all of this now being looked at very precisely, and trying to determine.

[15:15:07]And it is raises the very obvious questions, how could he have traveled to these places, maybe leaving the U.K. or transiting through a

third country, but nobody noticing, and coming back into the U.K. again with nobody noticing, no indication of apparently of where he had traveled

to -- Hala.

GORANI: Right. And also there is the Libya connection. I mean, there we know that there is an ISIS presence. There is an al Qaeda in the Maghreb

presence as well. I mean, that is kind of a country that we don't talk about very often, but where there are real issues with these extremist

groups and their influence there.

STARR: Absolutely. I will tell you the U.S. intelligence community, and the U.S. military, and I think very fair to say the British and other

countries as well really trying to re-establish contact with what the elements that are emerging in Libya to potentially form some sort of more

stable government there.

A lot of work going on behind the scenes because of this very question. If they do estimate there may be hundreds of ISIS fighters still in various

parts of Libya trying to regroup, even though the U.S. pushed them out of the coastal city of Sert late last year.

And there are also potentially hundreds of al Qaeda fighters still in Libya, so that is very much an additional concern -- Hala.

GORANI: Barbara Starr at the Pentagon, thanks very much. Let's talk more about those intelligence leaks. CNN political analyst and "Washington

Post" columnist, Josh Rogin is with me. So Josh, are there more leaks these days or are we talking about them more?

JOSH ROGIN, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, we have two sets of leaks. We've got the leaks that are related to the Trump Russia investigation which are

just everywhere and that's a result and a byproduct of the president's declared war on the intelligence community.

Since before he was elected the president has been attacking the CIA and the FBI and the other intelligence communities and they have been attacking

back, and that is a lot to do with a whole pack of leaks.

The leaks that we saw yesterday are of a different sort. Those are generally not seen as an attack on the Trump administration, but a regular

course of journalists doing their job.

And for the Trump White House, that is all of the same thing, and the intention to crack down on leaks is borne out of their frustration with the

leaks coming out of the Russian investigation, but it could be used to address this problem as well.

GORANI: All right, and we heard also from Donald Trump in Brussels today saying he was going to get to the bottom of those leaks as well. We heard

as well from the Justice Department. So I wonder what political impact is this having on the administration.

The fact that there are those two sets of leaks, the ones that you mentioned that are coming perhaps from members of the intelligence agencies

and Justice Department that are having a political motivation behind them, and these ones?

ROGIN: Well, we got two big problems. One is there is a steady and continuing erosion of trust between the president and key allied countries.

Now some of that is of the White House's own make. The president, himself, has revealed classified information especially in meetings with the Russian

foreign minister only two weeks ago.

So their hands are not totally clean on this, but that is a big problem as the president proposes new cooperation on counterterrorism that is

undermined if that intelligence cooperation cannot be safely ensured.

The second big problem is the further erosion of President Trump and his own intelligence community and that has all sorts of second and third

degree effects. The president is already skeptical of the products coming out of the intelligence community.

He relies on television, phone calls with friends, and people that he meets in the White House, and that's a problem. And if the president is not

getting the best information that the U.S. intelligence community can provided and if he doesn't believe in that information that can lead to bad

political and policy decisions as it already has.

GORANI: Last question I want to ask you about the reception, the president of the United States got from his European counterparts at this

NATO meeting in Brussels, because I found it interesting specifically, I mean, beyond the sort of the removing from his way the Montenegrin leader,

which was talked a lot about on social media.

I mean, I looked at the faces of Emmanuel Macron, the Luxemburg prime minister, I mean, they were smiles and even you could say snickers there

from European leaders listening to Donald Trump, you know, give them a lesson on how much they should be spending on defense, et cetera. What did

you make of his first foray into these big international summits today?

ROGIN: You know, over the course of the last six months since Donald Trump was elected, we have seen the attitudes of the European leaders evolve from

sort of fear and concern to more of mockery. You know, that is troubling on a whole bunch of levels.

[15:20:07]But what it shows is that the Trump administration had an opportunity especially in the summit to really repair some of the damage

that they inflicted on these relationships with casual statements and criticisms of allies that were unnecessary.

A lot of the campaign rhetoric, they did not take that opportunity, and now those sort of, distance between America and its allies is only growing and

that harms all of the cooperation that the president proposed today.

It harms the efforts to push back against Russian aggression, and the harms the efforts to fight counterterrorism, and I really think that the

administration -- there are many parts of the administrations who are realizing this, and working hard to try to push back against this White

House effort, but there is a split.

And cabinet officials like James Mattis and Rex Tillerson understand the need to repair relations with the European leaders and it is not clear that

the president understands that at all.

GORANI: Well, it is interesting that you have actually provided the perfect segue way for me as Rex Tillerson is traveling to London tomorrow

in the aftermath of the Manchester attack and possibly a sort of forgive us visit after the leaks of the photographs. Thanks very much, Josh Rogin at

the "Washington Post."

Still to come tonight, royalty comes to the Royal Manchester Children's Hospital as the queen visits the survivors of the attacks. Stay with us.


GORANI: The queen has visited survivors of the Manchester attack in the hospital today. She called the atrocity very wicked as she spent time with

the young patients. The queen also praised the singer, Ariana Grande, whose concert they have been attending. With that story, here is Erin



ERIN MCLAUGHLIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): A royal visitor to Manchester Children's Hospital. Queen Elizabeth met with terror's youngest

victims, one all smiles and dressed up in her Ariana Grande t-shirt.

QUEEN ELIZABETH: You had enjoyed the concert?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, it was really good.

MCLAUGHLIN: And for another victim and her father, words of comfort.

QUEEN ELIZABETH: It is a shock, isn't it?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, a very big shock. A big shock for everybody, really. Very scary.

QUEEN ELIZABETH: Very wicked to target that sort of thing.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It is awful, really.

MCLAUGHLIN: The queen also met with the doctors and the nurses who saved the lives of 14 children brought to this hospital. Five in critical care.

But as the hospitals closer to the scene of the attack became stretched, they brought patients further out.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The truth is that --

MCLAUGHLIN: At the Stepping Hill Hospital, Dr. Colin Wasson was one of many called in to help ten victims, some with serious injuries.

[15:25:08]DR. COLIN WASSON, MEDICAL DIRECTOR, STEPPING HILL HOSPITAL: So it is a mixture as you would expect from a blast, broken bones, but quite a

bit of people struck by flying metal so people with shrapnel in the body, and sometimes many pieces of it. I think that is, I suppose, particularly

difficult for the staff knowing that almost certainly some of those pieces of metal had been intentionally placed to cause the maximum harm.

MCLAUGHLIN: I asked him how that felt.

WASSON: I felt proud. You know, this is what you go into medicine or nursing for, so that you might be able to help other people.

MCLAUGHLIN: And Thursday's royal visit reassured not only the patients and the staff at the children's hospital.

WASSON: I think that what we have really seen in the both the queen's visit, but also in the mood expressed across the country, there is just a

real collective solidarity and national pride and resilience and determination not to be cowered by these dreadful events.

MCLAUGLIN: Erin McLaughlin, CNN, Manchester.


GORANI: Well, Muhammad Lila joins me live from outside Manchester Royal Infirmary where we saw the queen pay a visit to the patients and older

patients are being treated as well. What is, Muhammad, the latest on the condition of the survivors?

MUHAMMAD LILA, CNN INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, Hala, it is not just older patients, it's older and younger patients. There are still five

people being treated in critical care in the hospital behind me.

And just to the right where you can't see me there is a children's hospital, a number of children are still being treated in critical care.

We had the chance to speak to one of the doctors at the hospital here, and he describes these injuries as horrific and life changing.

Pointing out that when you are dealing with the type of injury like this, it requires a specific expertise in trauma medicine. You're dealing with

things like shrapnel and a medical term called catastrophic bleeding where you have to stop the bleeding right away.

The doctors sprang into action immediately, but unfortunately, there are still several patients here with a long road of recovery. We do know that

of the 22 people killed today, the police have now identified all of them. The next of kin have all been notified.

There are so many stories, so many tragic stories of people who just went to the concert for a birthday celebration, and they didn't come home, but

there was one story that really stood out to me. It was the story of a 14- year-old girl named Sorrell Lezkowski.

She was 14 years old who went to the concert with her mother and her grandmother, and they were not at the concert for themselves. They were

there to just pick up a couple of friends.

Well, the 14-year-old died as result of a blast. Her mother had to have surgery as a result of the blast, and her grandmother is still in intensive


So if you add that all up, it works out to three generations of women all in the same family whose lives have been changed forever by this one

despicable act of terror.

GORANI: Standby, Muhammad. I want to explain to our viewers what they are hearing me behind me. There was a young victim, 15-year-old, Olivia

Campbell, who was missing for a few days and her death was confirmed by her parents a couple of days ago. Her stepfather, Paul Hodgson, has been

driving around the square where this vigil has grown really over the last few days.

With friends of his and supporters driving motorcycles, and scooters and they are right now revving their engines to honor the life of Olivia and

her mother, Charlotte Campbell and Paul Hodgson, her stepfather were in this square just minutes ago.

So this is what you're hearing behind me. This is really a sign of respect and a way to honor this particular victim, Olivia.

Muhammad, if you are still with us, obviously, we have covered all this terrible news, and he is gone, that is OK. There are some bright spots in

some of the cases in hospital where people have managed to overcome some of their injuries and have been released. But we'll get to that in a moment.

After a break, we'll have much more on the terror investigation including the new details about where authorities say this bomber went before

carrying out the attack.


HALA GORANI, CNN ANCHOR: Welcome back to CNN's coverage of the Manchester terror attack. An update on what we know as we continue to broadcast live

from the site of the vigil here in the heart of Manchester.

An American official is telling CNN that Salman Abedi likely trained inside Syria with ISIS. Turkish and German officials say he briefly traveled

through airports in their countries as well. And in the U.K., police say there's no doubt this is a terror network situation, and eight people are

in custody.

Meanwhile, investigators are digging into the Manchester bomber's ties to Libya. Our Nic Robertson is looking at that for us. He joins me now.

He's in Sicily where the G7 Summit begins tomorrow.

So talk to us a little bit about what we know connect the suicide bomber here in Manchester to Libya. We know his parents are Libyan, and he was

there for several weeks before the attack.

NIC ROBERTSON, CNN INTERNATIONAL DIPLOMATIC EDITOR: Yes, his father has told reporters that he took his son out of Manchester to Libya for about

three weeks because he believed that his son was going to get into trouble because of some incidents with gangs. And a friend of his son, Salman

Abedi, had been killed, and therefore, his son was very angry about that.

That is what the father says took him away to Libya, which is where the father came from, to Tripoli, and wouldn't give his son his passport

because he was worried he was going to go back to Britain and get into trouble.

This is what the father says. His son told him that he was going to go to Mecca on a pilgrimage and that he'd been able to get cheap deal through

Manchester and he was going to go back through there briefly. The father says that he didn't think he's son was going to stay in Manchester.

And so we have from intelligence sources and airport officials along the route that he, a couple of days before he got back to Britain, transited

through Ataturk International Airport in Istanbul and also transited an airport in Germany. Now, the Turkish official at that airport said he

didn't believe that Salman Abedi had that time on a connecting flight from Syria into Ataturk International Airport because there are no connecting

flights. But precisely where he came from, that official wouldn't say.

If you piece that together with what the father said, it appears that he came from Libya to Istanbul. But we don't know it for sure. Then you

factor in that other piece of information from U.S. intelligence officials who say they believe that Abedi has spent some time in Syria getting

instructions from ISIS. So there is a lot still here that intelligence officials don't know.

And of course, the crux of it is, who did he know in Libya? Who did he potentially know in Syria? And could they have provided him details about

making a bomb? Could they have put in contact with a network in Britain that could have facilitated or provided the bomb?

What we also know from Libyan officials is that they have arrested his brother who was in Tripoli, 20-year-old Hashim. And he has been arrested

on suspicions of connections to ISIS and suspicions of potentially plotting an attack in Tripoli. All these details, very important for authorities

back in Manchester, Hala.

[15:35:13] GORANI: All right, Nic Robertson. He's in Sicily there to cover the G7 Summit and joined us with more on this Libyan link.

My next guest believes the Manchester bomber was radicalized right here at home. Hamed El-Said is chair and professor of the international business

and political economy at the Manchester Metropolitan University Business School. He has also advised the U.N.'s Counter-Terrorism Implementation

Task Force for several years ending in 2013.

All right. I need to explain to our viewers, once again, what we're hearing. This is homage. This is a tribute to Olivia Campbell, one of the

victims of the terrorist attack. And her stepfather has come with motorcycles to show their support.

Let's talk a little bit about the radicalization of this particular individual. How does it happen in Manchester?

HAMED EL-SAID, PROFESSOR, MANCHESTER METROPOLITAN UNIVERSITY BUSINESS SCHOOL: This is not really unique. I mean, what we know so far from the

information coming out from the media is that the father perhaps -- and I must really emphasize that, you know, this is very early information coming

out and currently being published in the media, that his father might have had links with the former Libyan Islamic Fighting Group, and perhaps he

might have even been to Afghanistan several times as a result. And then also maybe as he came to the U.K., running away, obviously, from the

Gaddafi regime at the time.

Remember that the former Islamic Libyan Fighting Group actually emerged with the agenda of overthrowing Gaddafi using violence. And therefore,

between 1990 and 1998, before they were defeated by the Gaddafi regime, a large number of the group actually left. Some of them went to Sudan, some

of them went to Afghanistan, and some of them actually went to Iraq later on after 2003. And apparently, the father, if this is really true that he

was linked to the group, came to the U.K.

GORANI: But the father has claimed, my two sons were getting in trouble, I took them back to Libya.

EL-SAID: Sure.

GORANI: I confiscated their passports, and the only reason I gave back the passport to Salman, the older son, is because he said he was going to

perform his umrah pilgrimage in Mecca.

EL-SAID: Correct. Correct. I mean, at the moment, it's very difficult really to validate all of this information, you know. Again, you know,

this is, as I said, a very early information coming out. However, you know, this is really not unique.

It's similar to what we have seen in the Madrid 2004, for example, and the attacks last year in Paris as well. There emerged a very strong, in fact,

international dimension that was very clear. You had the train bombers in Madrid in 2004 which had links and network actually in North Africa and

Morocco and in Madrid.

GORANI: And it's interesting because all of this that you're mentioning predates ISIS.

EL-SAID: True.

GORANI: So those who say if you want to solve this radicalization problem, if you want to protect western countries from ISIS sponsored terrorism,

just defeat ISIS and you're done --

EL-SAID: But, well, it's actually --

GORANI: -- so therefore, based on what you're saying, it's not that simple.

EL-SAID: It is not that simple at all. In fact, this have massive implications, really, for western policy and for us here. Obviously, now,

we cannot fight them over there thinking that they will not come back here. They are coming back here.

But, really, the main thing here is we have to understand how these links are being established at the international level. But also, we have to

make sure that, you know, failed states in the Middle East are being turned into safe havens where those individuals are being trained and actually

where their experience is being built.

And this is the main thing here, that once they do that, they go to a place like Syria, the chances of committing, you know, a terrorist act here in

the West is higher. And not only that, the chance of succeeding and even causing more damage is higher, too.

GORANI: So what's the solution? Because, I mean, even defeating ISIS, if you had a magic wand and all of a sudden --

EL-SAID: Sure.

GORANI: -- Syria became this thriving, functioning democracy, same with Iraq, and all sects were happily sharing power --

EL-SAID: Sure.

GORANI: -- would we then see less of this, or is there a sort of a funding, an international network and effort, that will exist no matter


EL-SAID: There are push and there are pull factors for terrorism really. You know, there are the factors that are attracting individuals in the

Middle East, the failure of the state, the presence of terrorist organization that seems to be providing youth here in the West with some

kind of alternative and home.


EL-SAID: And on the other hand, you have youth here and the worse who are not doing very well in general. They are troubled in life. They are not

getting good jobs. They are not getting good education. They have really bad relations with their relatives in the countries that they are --

GORANI: This kid, though, Hamed, was a university student. He's not some poor kid who can claim, I didn't have a job. I was oppressed.

EL-SAID: Sure.

GORANI: He came from a middle class family.

[15:40:00] EL-SAID: He did come from middle class family, but, again, the thing is, how did perceive himself? It's not how these individuals

actually think, it's how they feel. And all the information we're gathering about him and other individuals like him actually confirm that

these guys feel they have no future. They feel they have no value. They feel they do not really belong.

GORANI: And there's a psychopathic murderous element. Let's not pretend, you know, that that's not there as well. They must enjoy, on some level,

causing this carnage.

EL-SAID: Well, there are some individuals who could. We can't really generalize because there's really is psychiatry, science, in this area,

showing really clearly that these individuals do not really suffer, not all of them, maybe a small number of them do. But it's very clear that a small

number of them suffer from psychopathic, you know, diseases. In fact, most of them are actually rational human beings. They know exactly what they

are doing.

GORANI: And as always, the conclusion is it's a complex problem.

EL-SAID: Indeed.

GORANI: And it will require a very complex solution.

EL-SAID: Indeed.

GORANI: Thank you, Hamed El-Said of the Manchester Metropolitan University Business School. Also, advised the U.N. on counter terrorism.

EL-SAID: It's a pleasure.

GORANI: We really appreciate it.

EL-SAID: Thank you for having me.

GORANI: And I've been asked to reiterate why you are hearing this revving of engines, and it is because one of the relatives of Olivia Campbell, the

young victim, the 15-year-old, who was killed in the attack has gathered here with friends and supporters with motorcycles and scooters, and so they

are revving their engines in support and also paying tribute to all the innocents who were killed.

This is THE WORLD RIGHT NOW. U.S. politics have taken some bizarre twists and turns lately. And the state of Montana is no exception as their

congressional race gets physical and a journalist gets slammed to the ground by a candidate. We'll be right back.


GORANI: The debate over health care in America has stirred up a lot of emotions and politics, but nothing like what you're about to see next.

On the eve of the congressional race in Montana, a Republican candidate apparently assaulted a reporter physically for asking him a question on the

House health care bill. CNN's Kyung Lah has our story.


KYUNG LAH, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): Republican congressional candidate Greg Gianforte charged with misdemeanor assault the

night before Montana's special election after allegedly body-slamming "Guardian" reporter Ben Jacobs at his campaign headquarters.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE (via phone): He's a reporter and he asked Greg about his health care plan, and he, quote, "body-slammed" him.

LAH (voice-over): The altercation captured by Jacobs in an audio recording.

BEN JACOBS, POLITICS REPORTER, THE GUARDIAN: -- the CBO score. As you know, you've been waiting to make your decision about health care until we

saw the bill out and it just came out. And when you talk about --

REP. GREG GIANFORTE (R), MONTANA: Yes. We'll talk to you about that later.

JACOBS: Yes, but there's not going to time. I'm just curious if you can react right now.

GIANFORTE: OK. Speak with Shane, please.

JACOBS: But we don't have (inaudible).

GIANFORTE: I'm sick and tired of you guys. The last time you came in here you did the same thing. Get the hell out of here!

[15:45:02] JACOBS: Jesus!

GIANFORTE: Get the hell out of here! OK. The last guy did the same thing. Are you with "The Guardian"?

JACOBS: Yes! And you just broke my glasses.

GIANFORTE: The last guy did the same damn thing.

JACOBS: You just body slammed and broke my glasses.

GIANFORTE: Get the hell out of here.

JACOBS: You'd like me to get the hell out of here. I'd also like to call the police. Can I get your guys' names?

LAH (voice-over): Jacobs later recounting the incident in an interview while he was at the hospital where he received x-rays on his elbow.

JACOBS (via phone): He grabs my record and throws me down. My glasses break. He sort of -- I think. I'm pretty sure he's on top of me wailing

for a second and then screams at me to get the hell out. It's just very strange and mortifying.

LAH (voice-over): Gianforte's campaign offering a different version of events just after the incident, writing, "Jacobs aggressively shoved a

recorder in Greg's face and began asking badgering questions. Jacobs was asked to leave. After asking Jacobs to lower the recorder, Jacobs

declined. Greg then attempted to grab the phone that was pushed in his face. Jacobs grabbed Greg's wrist and spun away from Greg, pushing them

both to the ground. It's unfortunate that this aggressive behavior from a liberal journalist created this scene at our campaign volunteer barbecue."

Both the audio recording and eyewitness accounts contradicting Gianforte's defense. A team from Fox News who was in the room recounting that

Gianforte grabbed Jacobs by the neck with both hands and slammed him into the ground. Gianforte then began punching the reporter. They eyewitnesses

also stressing that at no point did they witness Jacobs acting aggressively.

Gianforte's opponent choosing not to address the incident in an interview Wednesday night.

LAH (on camera): Is there anything you want to say about the audio?

ROB QUIST, UNITED STATES DEMOCRATIC HOUSE CANDIDATE: You know, I think that is more for law enforcement, you know, to understand.


GORANI: Well, voting was already underway, so it's unclear how this alleged assault on a journalist will impact the election results. CNN's

Senior Reporter for Media and Politics Dylan Byers is with me from Los Angeles.

I mean, this audio is unbelievable. "The Guardian" reporter, Ben Jacobs, is saying he was body slammed. He had to get an x-ray on his elbow. I

mean, what has been the reaction overall? Because we've seen, over the last several months, such vilification of journalists and, in fact,

physical violence directed at them at some campaign rallies during the presidential campaign last year, but this is above and beyond.

DYLAN BYERS, CNN SENIOR REPORTER FOR MEDIA AND POLITICS: It is above and beyond, Hala. There has been great deal of rhetoric, much of it has come

from now President Donald Trump. But to have this coming from someone who is actually running for office, someone who's been trying to make the case

to voters that they are fit to lead and to represent them in Washington.

In this case, in the state of Montana, you only have one congressional representative. This is it. And the idea that that person would be

someone who doesn't sort of have the temperament capable of resisting primal urges to sort of lash out physically at a reporter for asking very

basic questions.

I mean, questions about, you know, how you feel about the CBO report on health care legislation. That's the sort of thing you and your team sit

down and write out as soon as the CBO report comes out. That's not a terribly pressing question.


BYERS: The reporter was doing nothing wrong. So, yes, it has raised a lot of questions. But you bring up an important point, how much will it affect

the election?

It happened less than 24 hours before voters went to the polls. An estimated 70 percent of voters had already cast their ballots. We know

that there were some phone calls in to see if those ballots could be changed, and that's not something that can happen under Montana law.

And this is really important, there is so much anti-media sentiment out there. It's highly possible that some voters might turn out to vote for

this guy because of the way that he treated this candidate, and indeed some interviewers with voters around the state of Montana bear that out.

GORANI: But, Dylan, also, interestingly, as I was reading reaction to this online -- we're here in Manchester, obviously -- but some Republican

elected officials have gone on television stations saying it was wrong unless he deserved it and things like that. So not necessarily condemning,

even if it is proven beyond any kind of doubt that he physically assaulted a journalist, this candidate.

BYERS: That's absolutely right. And you look at, you know, House Speaker Paul Ryan. On the one hand, he comes out and he says, you know, I don't

condone any violence, what he did was unforgivable. But at the same time, saying, look, if the will of the people is that the Republican candidate

should win, then that's the will of the people, and they're not going to go against it.

All good and well, but there is certainly has not been a robust response from Republicans, from lawmakers, to sort of address this and address the

question of who are Republicans as a party, what do they stand for, and in this case, what are they willing to tolerate?

[15:50:08] GORANI: Dylan Byers, thanks very much. It will be interesting to see the results of this election. Joining us from L.A. We'll be right



GORANI: Well, the investigation and the raids continue here in Manchester in the aftermath of that attack. Breaking news from the site of the latest

raid to bring you now.

Manchester police are saying that materiel has been found in Wigan that is potentially suspicious. They say evacuations are happening as a

precaution. Full disclosure, I'm not exactly sure how far Wigan is to the center of Manchester, but they have been conducting these raids in Greater

Manchester. And they have, in fact, made a total of eight arrests.

There have been some arrests that have been made in the hours following the attack. And few of the individuals have been released, but eight people

still detained in this raid in Wigan. We'll bring you more as we know it.

As Donald Trump paid tribute to the people of Manchester, a former U.S. president has been reflecting on the attack. Barack Obama says the bombing

is a reminder of the great danger that exists in the world. And he was speaking at a forum for democracy in Berlin where he was joined by the

Chancellor, Angela Merkel. Listen.


BARACK OBAMA, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The world is a very complicated place, when we can see the terrible violence that took place

just recently in Manchester. And we had a chance backstage to send a message to the people of Manchester about how heartbroken we are by the

loss of life and to grieve with the families. And it's a reminder that there is great danger and terrorism and people who would do great harm to

others just because they're different.


GORANI: Barack Obama in Germany. Richard Quest is in London.

Richard, you know Manchester well, obviously. You lived here for several years. I think you're actually from this part of England, right? What are

your thoughts on this day, a few days after, as we're all sort of still processing what happened on Monday?

RICHARD QUEST, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, I was born in Liverpool, which is 40 miles to the west, and then lived in Leeds, which is 30 miles to the

east of the other side of the Pennine Mountains. So, yes, Manchester, a place I know extremely well over many decades.

And the reality is that, of course, the city will recover. Of course, the city will bounce back. But what is really gripping, not just Manchester,

but the country tonight is this idea that there is an active cell in the United Kingdom and this question of the bomb maker. The bomb maker on the


And if you take, Hala, what we saw in Paris and with Brussels, when these people know that they are being sought, they become even more dangerous and

they commit even more atrocities, and you end up with even more incidents. And that's the fear tonight, that as they are hunted down with Wigan, which

is about 40 kilometers from where you are, with all these other searches, Hala, so the hunted become aggressively violent even more so.

[15:55:12] GORANI: All right. We'll see you at the top of the hour, Richard. Thanks for that.

Before we go, we are learning more about the 22 people murdered in the bombing. Here are some of the heartbreaking stories of the lives behind

the numbers.

Elaine McIver was an off duty police officer. She was known for her big heart and bubby personality and for inspiring friends to always see the

positive in life, her friends tell us.

Chloe Rutherford and Liam Curry were a young couple in love. Their families say the teenagers were perfect in every way for each other. They

wanted to be together forever and now they are.

And these victims are so young. Fourteen-year-old Sorrell Leczkowski, she died in the blast. Her mother and grandmother were both injured. Her

grandfather says she was talented and creative. And even though she was young, she was the rock that kept the family together.

So as I mentioned, we're in St. Anne's Square here where this vigil has only expanded over the last two or three days. We're seeing more people

stand in lines just to deposit flowers, to write notes, to write in chalk, as well, around the square, RIP and messages of support.

This is a live image coming to you. We have our cameras there in several parts of the square. You're seeing two two balloons, this is 22. That's

because, obviously, the number of victims is 22. But so many more are injured, with many, many that have sustained life-altering injuries.

We'll continue our coverage live from Manchester in the coming hours. Thanks for watching. I'm Hala Gorani. I'll see you soon. "QUEST MEANS

BUSINESS" is up next.