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Manchester bombing victims remembered on first anniversary


AFP
MACHESTER
A MINUTE of silence fell over the city of Manchester on Tuesday as Britain mourned the 22 killed in a bomb attack there a year ago outside a teen pop concert, with flower tributes, songs and a memorial service to honour the dead.
Prime Minister Theresa May and Prince William joined families of the victims -- seven of whom were under the age of 18 -- for the cathedral ceremony to remember the May 22 Manchester Arena attack during an Ariana Grande performance.
Salman Abedi, a British man of Libyan heritage, blew himself up outside the venue and an investigation continues into how the attack happpened.
"In this service we come together as people of different faiths and none, and to remember with love before God those whose lives were lost and those whose lives have been changed forever,"said Manchester Cathedral dean Rogers Govender.
The service, attended by first responders, civic leaders and some of the scores injured in the bombing, led the minute of silence at 2.30pm (1330 GMT), which was also marked at British government buildings nationwide.
Prince William and members of the Sikh, Jewish, Muslim and Humanist communities also made readings, and a youth choir sang"Somewhere Over the Rainbow"-- the same song with which Grande closed the One Love Manchester benefit concert organised two weeks after the bombing.
"You who were hurt or bereaved 12 months ago today are forever part of Manchester, forever part of us,"said bishop of Manchester David Walker.
Pop star Justin Bieber replied to the paper's front page on Twitter with a message of support:"We will never let go of hope. #OneLoveManchester".
Grande, who had just finished performing when the bomber struck outside, also shared a message of support for those affected."I love you with all of me and am sending you all of the light and warmth I have to offer on this challenging day,"she wrote.
Manchester United and England striker Marcus Rashford paid tribute to his home city, writing on the club's website about the"unimaginable"attack.
"Nobody will ever forget what happened but the way Manchester pulled together shows you everything you need to know about the people here. Seeing how everyone reacted made me so proud to be a Mancunian."

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