Cryptic tweets emerged on Twitter on early Tuesday morning, with the hashtags #IslamicState and #Manchesterarena, along with a message that seemed to indicate ISIS was taking claim to the Monday night Ariana Grande concert attack in Manchester, UK. A few hours later, ISIS officially took responsibility for the attack.
“You forget our threat? This is the just terror,” the unverified account tweeted before being deleted.
Although the tweet wasn’t an official confirmation that ISIS claimed the concert attack, numerous ISIS supporters celebrated the tragedy online by calling a win against the “the crusaders” from the West. One of the ISIS supporters, a masked person who spoke English, created an online video and while holding up a handmade sign that read “Manchester” and the date of the concert attack, announced that the incident was only beginning.
— Michael S. Smith II (@MichaelSSmithII) May 23, 2017
“This is only the beginning. The lions of Islamic State of Iraq and Sham are beginning to attack all the crusaders.”
Another supporter claimed that the attack was payback for the UK’s involvement in the bombing attack against Isil in both Iraq and Syria.
“It seems that the bombs of the British airforce over children of Mosul and Raqqa has just come back to Manchester.”
Similar reactions occurred in March after the Westminster attack, in which the attacker, Khalid Masood, appeared to have been inspired by ISIS. He was touted as “a soldier of the Islamic State,” meaning that he was an ISIS supporter, although he didn’t take direct orders from the terrorist group.
ISIS claimed responsibility for the Manchester attack, the deadliest terrorist assault in Britain since 2005 https://t.co/kxfJlDy2OQ
— The New York Times (@nytimes) May 23, 2017
Isil’s Amaq News Agency eventually issued a statement taking claim of the attack. The terrorist group used the news agency’s social media account to explain that one of their “soldiers” planted the explosive device.
“One of the soldiers of the Caliphate was able to place an explosive device within a gathering of the Crusaders in the city of Manchester.”
The death count has now risen to 22 people, with an additional 119 people injured. The terrorist group described the concert venue as shameless.
[Feature Photo: AP/Rui Vieira]